Week 6 Heisman Ballot

Perhaps I’ve been putting “Clearinghouse Chaos” on too many of my posts, so I’m going to distinguish my Heisman Ballots in the extremely creative way of attaching the current week to the title. As I noted in yesterday’s thoughts on the weekend there wasn’t a whole lot of exciting action and with such little action among the polls there was also very little action among the Heisman favorites.

1. Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma

Bradford was my leader last week and while he didn’t blow the rest of the competition out of the water, he didn’t do anything worth him losing the top spot yet this week. On the year he has 1665 passing yards, 18 touchdowns against just 3 interceptions, and is still maintaining a quarterback efficiency rating north of 200. Any time you can have a “lackluster” game and maintain those kind of numbers on the year you know something special is happening. Bradford will have an excellent chance to cement himself in the top spot on many others’ Heisman ballots next week in the Red River Shootout. An excellent game there and he could put some distance between himself and the competition.

2. Chase Daniel, QB, Missouri

Daniel had a solid game of his own on national TV as Missouri dismantled Nebraska and put to rest a 30 year losing streak. The only problem was that by halftime Daniel’s Tigers were up 35-10 and Gary Pinkel in his don’t-run-up-the-score wisdom only allowed Daniel to throw the ball 5 times in the third quarter – and sat him for the fourth. Not finishing games hasn’t been much of a problem for Daniel since he usually gets his numbers but this week he only managed a paltry 253 yards passing connecting on 18 of 23 attempts. He should get a chance to really open up the offense this week as Oklahoma State travels to Columbia and could overtake Bradford for the top spot if he performs well and/or Bradford struggles in the Red River Shootout.

3. Colt McCoy, QB, Texas

McCoy completes the trio of Big 12 quarterbacks at the top of the Heisman race by doing much the same as his two counterparts ahead of him did last week. He had a good but not spectacular week only throwing for 262 yards against Colorado and he even mixed in a pair of interceptions to boot. He did continue, however, to post a ridiculous completion percentage on the year as he completed 76% of his passes in Boulder. Holding him back from Bradford and Daniel is his lack of passing yards on the year, a glamour stat that voters tend to rely on when attempting to distinguish between such high quality candidates. Much like Bradford, he’ll have an excellent chance to elevate his stock as a pair of top 5 teams clash in Dallas in a game I may have mentioned a time or two already.

4. Donald Brown, RB, UConn

Brown first crept onto my radar two weeks ago when I originally had Javon Ringer ahead of him on my first ballot. Since then I’ve realized that what Brown is doing is more impressive due to the fact that he is doing it on 5 less carries a game. Brown still leads the nation in rushing and also leads the nation in rushing touchdowns. Last week against North Carolina he became the first back in the country to top the 1,000 yard mark and he continues to run all over any competition he comes across. It helps his cause that he is the main source of offense on a team that plays in a less than stellar conference, a benefit that could keep him in my top 5 for a long time. However if UConn starts to lose a bunch of games he could face from Heisman notoriety very quickly.

5. David Johnson, QB, Tulsa

This week’s little guy quarterback spot will get flipped from Max Hall to David Johnson. It’s not that Hall did anything particularly wrong in last week’s Cougar win over Utah State, but the more I look at Johnson’s numbers the more I think they are just too good to ignore. Johnson is 4th in the country averaging more than 330 passing yards per game and while he doesn’t have the super high completion percentage that the favorites on this list have he is completing a modest 70% himself. Johnson also leads an aerial attack at Tulsa that has accounted for 23 touchdowns on the year. But what really legitimizes these numbers over say a Case Keenum is that Johnson is attempting less than 30 passes a game. Putting up stupid numbers in a little guy conference is one thing, but to put up stupid numbers on less than 30 passes a game at any level is another thing altogether.

Some more guys to keep an eye on:

Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State

Bryant is the Cowboys’ do it all man, returning punts as well as putting up some of the best receiving numbers in the Big 12. His 178 all purpose yards per game rank him sixth in the country and continued production at that pace will eventually get you noticed.

Max Hall, QB, BYU

Hall had a good game last week throwing for 300 yards and two touchdowns, but he simply has been passed up in my eyes by another little guy quarterback who honestly has better numbers. Hall will really have to destroy some of the weaker opponents on BYU’s future schedule to get back into the top 5.

Derrick Washington, RB, Missouri

Most Heisman pundits have Jeremy Maclin as Missouri’s second option, but it’s Washington who is leading the country in scoring at just over 14 points a game. Throw in a yards per carry average north of 7 and you’ve got yourself an excellent sleeper candidate.

Brandon Tate, WR, North Carolina

Tate continues to impress on the stat sheet as one of the best all-purpose men in the game. He is still averaging more than 22 yards every single time he touches the ball. To be more seriously considered though he’ll have to step up his receiving game.

Graham Harrell, QB, Texas Tech

Mike Leach’s gunslinger had an outstanding day in Manhattan throwing for 454 yards and 6 touchdowns. Say what you will about being a product of a system but when you put up 450 and 6 it’ll get you noticed.

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