It seems to be a popular opinion that Denard Robinson WON'T realistically contend for the Heisman trophy in 2012. In fact, some seem to think that Fitz Toussaint has just as good of a shot to win it.
A tough schedule is a big reason, as some think the Wolverines will lose three, maybe even four games. Turnovers are another culprit, as it remains to be seen if Robinson can overcome his turnover-prone ways.
However, if late November of 2011 is any indication, then Robinson has learned from his mistakes. He stepped up in the biggest way against Nebraska and Ohio, and both games resulted in a Michigan victory. What was most impressive, though, wasn't what Robinson did in those games, but instead what he didn't do.
He strayed away from his turnover-prone ways in both of those games and took care of the ball as if his life depended on it. We didn't see him carelessly carrying the ball when he ran, nor did we saw him heave the ball into traffic or into crowds.
If he can do that the entire 2012 season—and that's a big IF—then he will undoubtedly emerge as a Heisman favorite. Would he be THE favorite, though? That ultimately depends on the rest of the team and how many games they win.
This team can't afford to lose too many games and still hope to have Robinson as a realistic Heisman contender, regardless of how well he plays.
I think the absolute maximum number of games they can lose is three; three losses would still enable him to at least be in the conversation.
I guess he can still be in Heisman talks if the team loses four games, but then he would have to put up unheard of statistics—similar to the ones we saw in 2010 when the coaches let him run wild.
Honestly, though, I think how well his team performs will carry just as much as weight as how well he performs.
Fair or not, how well your team does is just as important as anything to voters nowadays.