I learned a long time ago that success on a multiple choice exam has as much to do with one's ability to eliminate the wrong answers as it does to choose the correct ones. The same theory applies to this year's Heisman race. A quick glance at the Heisman candidates, as well as a short lesson on the award's history tells us why.
In 1935, The Downtown Athletic Club Trophy, by which it was originally known, (the name was changed to the Heisman trophy the following year) was won by Jay Berwanger, a half back from the University of Chicago.
Since the prestigious award’s inception: the positions, the schools, and the regions of the country represented by the winners lead us down a very easy path toward this year's recipient; University of Texas quarterback, Colt McCoy. All other finalists should have their bags packed and here's why they can't win:
History is definitely not on his side. In the award's 74 year history only one player on the defensive side of the ball has won. Now, keep in mind that I'm not talking about two platoon guys like Ernie Davis, who won in 1961 while playing halfback and linebacker for the 7-3 Syracuse Orangemen.
I'm talking about modern era football here. Michigan cornerback Charles Woodson is the only true defensive player to win the award and he did it while leading the Wolverines to the 1997 National Title.
The lesson learned here is easy, it's not going to happen. The good news for Suh is after the 2010 NFL Draft in April, he will be able to dry his tears with $100 bills.
Tebow is somewhat of a sentimental favorite, which is ironic because he's received so much sentiment during his four year career he’s beginning to tread on the very thin, very dangerous line of overexposure. The videos of his "crying game" against Alabama have been all over the internet for a week and while I have no evidence to support my claim, it just feels like the "tide" (pardon the pun) has turned against him.
Add that to the fact that only one time in Heisman history has a player won the award twice and you become even more skeptical. The decorated player that received that honor is Archie Griffin, who won it while playing running back for the Ohio State Buckeyes in 1974 and '75.
I’m sorry all you Tebow lovers. The two national titles he helped win for you should be enough to ease the pain.
Everything that I’ve learned in my not so illustrious football career as a player and coach tells me that Gerhart should win the award Saturday. However, after further review I have come to the conclusion that he doesn’t stand a chance.
In the storied past of all the great teams in the Pac 10 over the last 74 years, the western region of the country has been very underrepresented. Only 11 times in the history of the Heisman trophy has anyone west of the Rockies won the coveted award. Do I hear the cries of an “east coast bias?”
Now, he does have recent history on his side. Three players from the west coast have won it in the last seven years but all of them were from USC: Carson Palmer in 2002, Matt Leinart in 2004, and Reggie Bush in 2005.
Something else working against Gerhart is the fact that no player in the modern era has won the award in the same year his team lost four games.
After what was easily the most dominating performance by a running back this year, the bruising Stanford running back will go home empty handed.
At first glance you want to hesitate a little on this one. The south has had a Heisman representative 19 times, or a little less than one every four years. Running backs have won the award an impressive 42 times. But then it hits you smack in the face like an SEC linebacker…Alabama has NEVER won the award. Florida has won it three times, Auburn has won it twice, Georgia has won it twice, LSU has won it once, hell South Carolina has won it, but Alabama; zero.
If that’s not enough, only two sophomores have ever won the award, Sam Bradford took home the trophy in 2008. The other sophomore winner (Tebow) will be sitting beside Ingram in the crowd. On top of that, Ingram had the least yards (1,542) of any true running back who has won the award in over 25 years.
Which brings us to the only choice left…the Longhorns’ Colt McCoy:
Do you think it’s a coincidence that McCoy’s first name starts with “C?” Isn’t that always the best answer?
This one is easy. The south has been heavily represented, quarterbacks have won the award eight out of the last nine years and 26 times overall.
McCoy has won more games than any other quarterback in the history of college football and while this is not supposed to be a career achievement award, it has to factor into the minds of the voters.
Add that to the fact that he out performed the Heisman winner in their head to head match up last year and still did not win, McCoy has now become the sentimental favorite.
This one is a done deal fellas. Now go home and hit the books.