Who’s Your Heisman? [POLL]
Three finalists have been announced to win this year’s Heisman Trophy, which is given annually to the player deemed the most outstanding player in collegiate football.
COLLIN KLEIN, KANSAS STATE, QUARTERBACK, SENIOR
Klein passed for 2,490 yards and threw 15 touchdown passes while rushing for 890 yards with 22 rushing touchdowns leading Kansas State to an 11-1 record, Big 12 Championship and berth in the Fiesta Bowl against Oregon. His team’s national championship hopes were crushed by a 52-24 loss at Baylor in which he threw 3 interceptions and only averaged 2.3 yards per carry on 17 rushing attempts.
MANTI TE’O, NOTRE DAME, LINEBACKER, SENIOR
Te’o is the centerpiece of an Irish defense that has allowed just 10 touchdowns all year and ranks best in the nation in scoring defense. Te’o leads that defense with 101 tackles and 7 interceptions. Goal line stands against Stanford and Southern Cal helped Notre Dame to a perfect 12-0 record, #1 ranking and spot in the BCS National Championship Game against Alabama. Te’o is hoping to be the first player in history who only plays on defense to win the award.
JOHNNY MANZIEL, TEXAS A&M, QUARTERBACK, FRESHMAN
Manziel, or “Johnny Football,” has had an amazing freshman season. He set a record in total yards in the best conference in the nation, the SEC. He passed for 3,419 yards and 24 touchdowns while rushing for 1,181 yards and 19 touchdowns. His Aggies are 10-2 and shocked the world by beating Alabama in Tuscaloosa. No freshman has ever won the Heisman Trophy.
All three have had terrific seasons, but in my estimation, Kansas State’s loss to Baylor eliminates Klein, especially since the other quarterback’s stats are more impressive. So we’re down to Manziel or Te’o. Setting the SEC record in total yards means something, especially when the last two players to lead that conference in total yards went on to win the Heisman. No freshman has ever won the award and some voters may be hesitant to vote for one to win, but in my opinion, being a first year student shouldn’t factor into the decision. While Manziel could make history by being the first freshman to win, Te’o could make history by being the first solely defensive player in history to win. Charles Woodson of Michigan primarily played defense but also played on special teams and offense. He won the award in 1997. Te’o is the best player on the best defense in the country on a team that is undefeated and ranked #1.
“I am inclined to believe that Johnny Manziel should and will win the award, but as a lifelong Notre Dame fan, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want Manti Te’o win the Heisman Trophy.” – Shaffee