With all the wishes of playoffs being instituted in college football, Saturday night's game between No. 2 Texas Tech and No. 5 Oklahoma served as a playoff for Heisman Trophy candidates Graham Harrell and Sam Bradford.
With a 61-25 rout of Texas Tech, Sam Bradford made his name shine for the Heisman Trophy race. Although Harrell did not have a bad game by any means (361 yards, three touchdowns, one interception), it is hard to look past Bradford's seemingly flawless performance of 304 yards and four touchdowns.
Although all the attention was on Bradford and Harrell this past weekend for the Heisman, don't count out the others.
Tim Tebow, Florida junior quarterback
While going up against FCS school The Citadel didn't garner any Heisman coverage this weekend, it didn't hurt his chances. Being the 2007 Heisman Trophy winner doesn't hurt his chances, either.
After a slow start, Tebow has snuck back into the mix as Florida has put up 42 or more points for six games in a row. His five-touchdown game (three rushing, two passing) against Georgia showed everyone that he is not going away in the Heisman race this year.
Tebow has thrown for 2,114 yards and 22 touchdowns with only two interceptions. Known for his ability to bulldoze through defenses, Tebow has seen the end zone himself 11 times on rushing touchdowns and has accumulated 427 yards on the ground.
This week's rival game against Florida State will be a chance for Tebow to show to the Heisman voters that he hasn't lost any of his luster from last season.
Colt McCoy, Texas senior quarterback
While Harrell and Bradford garnered all the press this past weekend, McCoy and the Longhorns had the week off. With 3,134 passing yards, 30 touchdowns, and seven interceptions, McCoy has led Texas back into the BCS Championship game talk. McCoy also leads Texas in rushing with 527 yards, and eight touchdowns.
With their season finale against Texas A&M and a possible Big 12 Championship game yet to come, McCoy will not go down quietly in the Heisman race.
Sam Bradford, Oklahoma sophomore quarterback
Bradford is looking achieve the rare feat of winning the Heisman as a sophomore, a distinction he would share with Tebow, who became the first-ever to do it a season ago.
His stats are making that reality entirely possible: 3,710 passing yards and 42 touchdowns to six interceptions are hard to ignore for the Heisman, especially when leading your team to a 61-25 beating of the No. 2 team in the nation.
In Oklahoma's lone loss this season to Texas, Bradford still threw for 387 yards and five touchdowns and had two interceptions.
Graham Harrell, Texas Tech senior quarterback
It may be hard for the Heisman voters to look past a rout so late in the season, but the numbers Harrell has put up on the season cannot be ignored. Harrell is second in the nation in total offense per game, averaging 399 yards each game.
His 4,438 passing yards per game are far above the numbers of his Heisman competitors.
With 39 touchdowns and only six interceptions, Harrell led Tech up to a No. 2 ranking before falling against Oklahoma. He torched the Texas defense in Tech's 39-33 win with 474 yards and two touchdowns.
With the race seemingly turning into a Big 12 quarterback challenge, and last year's recipient still in the mix, it's hard to distinguish one from the pack since Bradford, McCoy, and Harrell have all played against each other and did remarkable in each of their losses.
My prediction is Bradford becomes the second sophomore to receive the Heisman. After OU's loss to Texas, he has quietly led the Sooners back into contention, letting the college football world know the Sooners are still in the national title picture with the win over Texas Tech.
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