Heisman Trophy 2011: Why Tyrann Mathieu Must Take Home College's Best Award

Eric BowmanFeatured ColumnistDecember 9, 2011

ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 03:  Tyrann Mathieu #7 of the LSU Tigers celebrates after earning the MVP trophy in their 42-10 win over the Georgia Bulldogs during the 2011 SEC Championship Game at Georgia Dome on December 3, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The best player on the best team in the country, Tyrann Mathieu has proven this season that he deserves to win the most coveted college football award: the Heisman Trophy. 

He made plays all season long, and just because he's a defensive back doesn't mean he can't win the award. It does hinder his chances because the voters are so enthralled with the offensive studs, but that shouldn't count him out. 

The only defensive player to win the Heisman Trophy was Charles Woodson back in 1997, and Mathieu should be the second. 

Also known as "Honey Badger" after the big You Tube hit, Mathieu is a huge reason why the LSU Tigers are undefeated, No. 1 in the country and playing in the BCS National Championship.

He's a defensive force for the Tigers, and if they didn't have him this season there's no way LSU would be the best in the land. 

When comparing Mathieu to Woodson, you'll find that "Honey Badger" has more tackles, forced fumbles, fumble recoveries, punt return yards and touchdowns than the Michigan Wolverines' star athlete.  

Woodson only outshines Mathieu in interceptions. 

So here we have a dominant defensive star who has shown he's better than what Woodson was back in 1997. This is proof he should be given college football's top award. 

Many wondered if he should even be a finalist, but he put his skills on further display in the SEC Championship game when his team needed him the most. 

You could argue that if Mathieu doesn't return a punt for a touchdown, the Tigers may have lost that game. They were down 10-0 and the offense was getting no production whatsoever. But "Honey Badger's" punt return gave the Tigers momentum and sucked the life right out of the Georgia Bulldogs. 

That's what star players do, and Mathieu's been doing it all season long.

The Heisman race is wide open, and while the voters are sure to show their biased love for the offensive guys, Mathieu has shown time and time again that he truly is the best player in college football. 


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