Could Ricky Dobbs win the 2010 Heisman Trophy? Could he join ranks with Roger Staubach, the only Navy quarterback to win this prestigious award?
If he duplicates last year's performance, I think he's got a chance, but his name hasn't surfaced on any of the Heisman watch lists.
Today, Las Vegas odds makers issued their list of Heisman hopefuls, and Dobbs' name was absent. They couldn't find a spot for him in their list of 25 candidates.
In 2009, Dobbs (6'1", 198 lbs) led Navy to one of their best records ever. The Middies finished 10-4, and capped off their season with a 35-13 Sun Bowl victory over Missouri.
WHY DOBBS DESERVES MENTION
Last year Dobbs broke the NCAA record, for rushing touchdowns by a quarterback (27), and ran for 1192 total yards. He also passed for over 1000 yards, threw six touchdowns, and only threw three interceptions.
He did all this while missing the Wake Forest game, and hardly playing against Temple because of an injured leg. He had surgery for the leg after the season ended.
In a disappointing opening loss to Ohio State, Dobbs threw two touchdowns, and ran for two more. He also totaled 83 yards on the ground.
He engineered the 23-21 upset of Notre Dame in South Bend, but the Sun Bowl might have been his best game.
In the Sun Bowl (vs Missouri) he completed 9 of 14 passes for 130 yards, for one touchdown, and no interceptions. He also ran for 166 yards and three touchdowns.
Dobbs played great all year, and showed that he and his team, could play against some of the strongest in college football.
CAN HE REALLY WIN THE HEISMAN TROPHY?
Winning the Heisman, or getting recognition as a front-runner, has so much to do with the performance of one's team. If a front-runner leads his team to a championship, the contest is probably over.
With Navy's schedule, which seems watered-down to most BCS teams, winning the Heisman could be tough.
The Midshipmen only play three teams from a BCS conference, and none of them look like heavyweights (Maryland, Wake Forest, and Duke). They also play Air Force, East Carolina, and Notre Dame.
The Notre Dame game is in the Meadowlands, and if a national television audience has reason to watch, Dobbs could get the kind of publicity he needs.
CAN NAVY HAVE A BIG YEAR IN 2010?
The success Navy has enjoyed in the past couple of years should continue in 2010. The chance of winning 10 games is good. The chance of making it into the top 25 is also good.
If they can get an opening win over Maryland, it's possible they'll get into the top 25, and be able to stay there for a while.
On offense they'll be quick and execute like only Navy can. It's a good bet they'll lead the country in rushing again.
They've also added a new dimension: They now have some size on the line.
The defense returns three players from the secondary, and all the front three returns. It's the linebacker position that could cause concern. Navy lost all their linebackers from 2009
The Midshipmen are going have to rely on Tyler Simmons, and group of what they consider solid replacements, to take over in 2010.
All of this, of course, is speculation. Nobody knows what's in store for Navy in 2010. Last year, a lot of people around the program thought it was going to be a rebuilding year.
But one thing is clear: Ricky Dobbs has to be given some Heisman mention by somebody!
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