2010 Heisman Trophy Rankings: Denard Robinson Surges to the Top
It's time for the latest edition of Bleacher Report's 2010 Heisman Trophy Rankings, presented by Heismanpundit.com.
The Heismanpundit.com Heisman Poll is made up of 13 Heisman voters from across the country. They vote for three players each week. Tabulations are made on a 3-2-1 basis, with three points awarded for a first-place vote, two points for a second-place vote and one point for a third-place vote.
The past two years, the Heismanpundit poll was the most accurate in the country, picking five of the top six finishers in the Heisman vote in 2008 and the top four in 2009.
Members of the panel include: Mike Bianchi of the Orlando Sentinel, Teddy Greenstein and Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune, Olin Buchanan and Tom Dienhart of Rivals.com, Jenni Carlson of The Oklahoman, Bruce Feldman of ESPN.com, J.B. Morris of ESPN the Magazine, Austin Murphy, B.J. Schecter and Stewart Mandel of Sports Illustrated, plus Dick Weiss of the New York Daily News.
Chris Huston, owner of Heismanpundit.com and a Bleacher Report contributor, coordinates and also votes in the weekly poll.
The poll is featured here on Bleacher Report each Tuesday during the college football season.
Here are the top players in the poll heading into Week 3...
No. 9: Case Keenum, QB, Houston (1 Point)
Keenum suffered a concussion againt UTEP
Chris Graythen/Getty Images
Houston quarterback Case Keenum received one point in this week's poll, but may not be long for this list. The senior suffered a concussion against UTEP last Friday and is questionable for this week's game against UCLA.
Before going down against the Miners, Keenum was 15 of 24 for 279 yards with no touchdowns and an interception.
On the year, he has completed 69.6 percent of his passes for 553 yards, five touchdowns, and three interceptions.
At this point, his quest to become the NCAA's all-time passing yardage leader may be in doubt.
No. 4 (tie): Kenjon Barner, RB, Oregon (2 Points)
Barner is tied for the national lead in scoring
Steve Dykes/Getty Images
Slotted in a five-way tie for fourth with two points in this week's poll is sophomore Oregon running back Kenjon Barner.
Barner followed up a five-touchdown performance against New Mexico in the opener with just 26 yards on seven carries against Tennessee, but he did produce 191 yards in the return game, including an 80-yard punt return for a touchdown that broke the backs of the Vols.
Barner is tied for the nation's lead in touchdowns with six so far this season, and he is fifth in all-purpose yardage at 226 yards per game.
No. 4 (tie): Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama (2 Points)
Richardson gashed the Nittany Lions for 144 yards
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Alabama sophomore running back Trent Richardson is tied for fourth in this week's poll with two points.
Richardson has filled in admirably for last year's Heisman winner Mark Ingram, who has been sidelined the past two weeks after undergoing minor knee surgery.
With most of the carries now coming his way, Richardson shined against Penn State, rushing for 144 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries while also catching four passes for 46 yards.
On the year, Richardson has 210 rushing yards and three touchdowns. Can he keep up the pace once Ingram returns?
No. 4 (tie): Kendall Hunter, RB, Oklahoma State (2 Points)
Hunter is averaging 207 rushing yards per game
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Kendall Hunter also is tied for fourth after collecting two points in this week's poll.
The Oklahoma State running back is off to a hot start so far. He followed up his 257-yard, four-touchdown Week 1 performance against Washington State with 157 yards and two scores against Troy this past Saturday.
On the year, he has 414 yards and six touchdowns and is tied for the national lead in scoring. He looks like he is back to his sophomore-year form, when he earned All-American honors.
While no one is comparing him to Cowboy great Barry Sanders just yet, he has a chance to move up in this poll if his production continues like this.
No. 4 (tie): Daniel Thomas, RB, Kansas State (2 Points)
Thomas is averaging 185 yards per game
Jeff Gross/Getty Images
The fourth player in this poll tied for fourth with two points is Kansas State senior running back Daniel Thomas.
The nation's premier power back ran for 137 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries against Southwest Missouri State this past Saturday, bringing his season totals to 371 yards and four scores. He is averaging an impressive 7.6 yards per carry.
Thomas and K-State take on Iowa State this week, but their first major test probably comes on October 7 when the Nebraska Cornhuskers come to town.
If Thomas is still a candidate at that point, look out.
No. 4 (tie): Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas (2 Points)
Mallett threw for 400 yards last week
Chris Graythen/Getty Images
The last of five players tied for fourth with two points in this poll is Arkansas junior quarterback Ryan Mallett.
The Razorbacks signal caller has picked up right where he left off last season. Through two games, he has thrown for 701 yards with six touchdowns and two interceptions while completing a remarkable 74 percent of his passes.
While his first two games have come against lesser opponents, that will soon change. The Razorbacks begin a brutal four-game stretch this weekend as they travel to Georgia before hosting No. 1 Alabama. They'll follow the Tide up with Texas A&M and Auburn.
If Mallett can survive that gauntlet, he might emerge as one of the favorites for the Heisman.
No. 3: Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State (19 Points)
Moore and Boise play at Wyoming this week
Geoff Burke/Getty Images
It was a short-lived stay at No. 1 in this poll for Boise State quarterback Kellen Moore, but at least he is clearly separated from the pack and in the upper echelon of Heisman contenders.
On the year, he has 215 passing yards and three touchdowns...and yes, one game-winning drive.
Even though his team had a bye, Moore's Heisman hopes took a hit thanks to Virginia Tech's loss to James Madison, as well as the outstanding play of a couple Big Ten quarterbacks.
Moore and the Broncos will try to avoid a letdown when they travel to Wyoming this week
No. 2: Terrelle Pryor, QB, Ohio State (20 Points)
Pryor played well against the Hurricanes
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images
Ohio State's Terrelle Pryor maintains his steady hold on the No. 2 spot as he totaled 20 points, including four first-place votes, in this week's poll.
Pryor is coming off an impressive performance against nationally ranked Miami, as he threw for 233 yards and a score and rushed for 113 and one more to lead the Buckeyes over the Hurricanes.
On the year, Pryor has 480 yards and four touchdowns passing with no interceptions and has another 130 yards and a score on the ground.
As the top player on a traditional power that is also a national title contender, Pryor has to be considered the odds-on favorite to win the Heisman at this point.
No. 1: Denard Robinson, QB, Michigan (28 Points)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Michigan sophomore quarterback Denard Robinson leads this week's poll with 28 total points and nine first-place votes.
Robinson's emergence on the college football scene has been nothing short of mind-boggling. Through two games, he leads the nation in rushing at 227 yards per game. Meanwhile, he is also completing 69 percent of his passes and has thrown for 430 yard and two scores. He has yet to turn the ball over despite being involved in 109 plays.
Last Saturday's performance against Notre Dame was one for the ages. He rushed for 258 yards and two touchdowns and threw for 244 yards and one touchdown. He led Michigan to the victory over the Irish thanks to a clutch 70-yard drive that culminated in his scoring with 27 seconds left.
On the day: 502 yards of offense, including a Notre Dame stadium record 87-yard touchdown run.
It remains to be seen whether Robinson can handle the pressure and rigors of a Heisman campaign, but it's pretty clear that he is a special player.
For now, he's No. 1 in the Heisman world.
Full Poll Results, Week 2 (first place votes in parentheses)
1. Denard Robinson, QB, Michigan--28 points (9)
2. Terrelle Pryor, QB, Ohio State--20 points (4)
3. Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State--19 points
4. (tie) Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas--2 points
4. (tie) Daniel Thomas, RB, Kansas State--2 points
4. (tie) Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama--2 points
4. (tie) Kenjon Barner, RB, Oregon--2 points
4. (tie) Kendall Hunter, RB, Oklahoma State--2 points
9. Case Keenum, QB, Houston--1 point