The Heisman Trophy race is in full swing, as there are just a few short weeks of college football left in the season.
While there are some surprise candidates—such as Notre Dame LB Manti Te’o and Oregon RB Kenjon Barner—the reality is that a quarterback is likely to win the award in 2012.
Let’s take a look at the top candidates and their current in-season odds to win—as per Bovada.lv.
Collin Klein – QB, Kansas State – 4/7
Until K-State loses and Klein has a bad game, he’s going to be the odds-on favorite to be named the best player in college football this year. Through seven contests, the Wildcats signal-caller completed 98-of-139 passes for 1,397 yards and 10 touchdowns, with just two interceptions.
He’s also incredible with his feet, taking off 110 times for 551 yards and 14 touchdowns.
This dual-threat playmaking machine is likely going to win the award and for good reason. Aside from the numbers, his team is currently ranked No. 3 in the BCS standings and has a legit shot at the national championship.
Geno Smith – QB, West Virginia – 4/1
Smith was making a much better case for the Heisman earlier in the campaign. However, WVU has fallen off recently and lost its past two contests against Texas Tech and Kansas State by a combined score of 104-28.
Smith still has ridiculous numbers—216-of-291 passing for 2,414 yards and 26 touchdowns with only two interceptions (both against Kansas State), plus 35 rushes for 56 yards and a TD—but his weak output against the Red Raiders and Smith’s Wildcats severely hurt his case.
There is still plenty of time for the Mountaineers to turn it around, with five games left on the schedule. Should Smith keep putting up his eye-popping figures, there is a chance he overtakes Klein.
A.J. McCarron – QB, Alabama – 8/1
The top-rated Crimson Tide have been absolutely destroying their meek opponents, but the team faces three ranked opponents in a row, starting with No. 11 Mississippi State in Week 9.
A reason why the Tide are rolling is junior QB McCarron’s elevated decision making and ability to run the offense. He’s completed 106-of-154 passes for 1,476 yards and 16 touchdowns. Perhaps most remarkably, those numbers come with nary an interception.
If McCarron can continue his mastery of the position against MSU, LSU and Texas A&M, there is a chance he garners serious consideration for the Heisman. After all, he’s playing the most important position for a team that could repeat as national champions.