Toby Gerhart Robbed by Voters for the Heisman Trophy

Steven ResnickSenior Writer IDecember 13, 2009

ATLANTA - DECEMBER 5:  (L-R) Mark Ingram #22 and quarterback Greg McElroy #12 of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrate after Ingram scored a 1-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Florida Gators during the SEC Championship game at Georgia Dome on December 5, 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

As I sit here at my desk pondering the decision on the selection of Mark Ingram as the 2009 Heisman winner, only one word comes to mind with his victory and that is disgraceful!

Ingram was not the best player in the country, he wasn't the most valuable player on his team, and he definitely wasn't the most outstanding.

Neither were Colt McCoy, Ndamukong Suh, and Tim Tebow! Suh may have been the most outstanding defensive player in the country, but let's face it there's no way a defensive player should be able to win the Heisman!

The only player out of the five on the list that dominated game in and game out on a consistent basis was Toby Gerhart. He was the best running back in the country, he was the most valuable player to his team, and he was definitely the most outstanding player in the country.

Of course the problem with Gerhart winning is that he's on the West coast and Ingram was on the East coast. Ingram's winning of the Heisman is just another example of the east coast bias that plagues the NCAA!

You can use the excuse that Gerhart didn't play in the last week of the season, so that hurt his chances. I'm sorry, but when a running back rushes for 205 yards on 29 carries with three touchdowns rushing and throwing the game winning touchdown pass in the last game of the season, that's an impressive accomplishment no matter if his game was the week before the ending of the regular season.

Also, what may have gotten the award is the fact that Ingram had an impressive last game against Florida with 28 carries 113 yards and three touchdowns. That's fair Florida was the number one ranked team in the country at the time.

Which, ended the season ranked number 13 against the run. Ingram faced only one other team ranked in the top 50 against the run and that was LSU at No. 44. Georgia also ranked in the top 50 at No. 41.

Yet, when you look at Gerhart he played Arizona State (18), Arizona (22), Oregon State (25), California (27), Oregon (39), and USC (42).

Ingram against LSU ran for 144 yards on 22 carries and no touchdowns. Meaning against the two teams ranked in the top 50 against the run he carried the ball 50 times for 267 yards, and three touchdowns.

Gerhart on the other hand played against six teams in his own conference that were in the top 50 against the rush.

Oregon State he carried the ball 20 times for 96 yards and two touchdowns. Arizona he carried the ball 28 times for 122 yards and two touchdowns. Arizona State 27 carries for 125 yards and one touchdown. Oregon he carried the ball 38 times for 223 yards and three touchdowns. California he carried the ball 20 times for 136 yards and four touchdowns.

So, in total for Gerhart he carried the ball 133 times for 697 yards and 12 touchdowns. What looks better 50 carries for 267 yards and three touchdowns against teams in the top 50 against the run or 133 carries for 697 yards and 12 touchdowns?

If you're talking about consistency only twice was Gerhart held under 100 yards while Ingram was held under 100 yards five times. His most touchdowns in a game was three while Gerhart's was at four. Gerhart was held out of the end zone once on the season while Ingram was held out three times.

In terms of final stats Gerhart beats Ingram in carries, yards per game, and touchdowns. The only category that Ingram beat Gerhart in was yards per carry.

Gerhart should have won away with the Heisman Trophy there was no player in the country that even came close to the season that Gerhart had.

I would say if you were to make an argument for anyone else it would be for LaMichael James of Oregon. Who made an immediate impact as a freshman after LeGarrette Blount was suspended.

Like Gerhart, James faced six teams that were in the top 50 against the run. He played in 12 games for the Ducks. He finished ahead of Ingram in yards per carry and yards per game, while Ingram had more touchdowns and more yards.

Dion Lewis of Pittsburgh should have been another running back that should have made it over Ingram. More carries, more yards, more touchdowns, and more yards per game. While the only category that Ingram won in was yards per carry.

For a quarterback Case Keenum of Houston should have been invited. Keenum on the season had 43 touchdowns to 9 interceptions, 5449 yards, and a completion percentage of 71 percent.

Only Lewis is a player that is on the East Coast in terms of who should have been invited. I get the fact that the Heisman doesn't go to freshman which Lewis and James are, but they were outstanding for their respective teams.

I'm pretty sure if Alabama didn't have a good game from Ingram, they'd still be fine against teams. Whereas take away Lewis, Keenum, James, and Gerhart there would be problem for each of those teams.

Tonight was just another example of the Heisman Trophy being given to the player on the best team and not given to the best player in the country. It's an absolute disgrace because the only player who truly deserved the award was robbed!

Tonight Toby Gerhart should have been the runaway winner of the award.


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