One weekend to go, then the voters make their decision. The obvious on-field candidate, Jameis Winston, would be running away with the award if not for possible pending legal difficulties, to put things mildly. We're supposed to know tomorrow whether an indictment will be made, and even that won't settle the arguments obviously.
Football-wise, Winston did well against Florida and with several others stumbling would have further distanced himself from the pack. Facing Duke this weekend, all he would need to do is not lose and he would be winning the vote by a landslide. As it stands, regardless of whether he's indicted, even a slightly poor performance against Duke will add more doubt to his candidacy. But the looming question is, who else deserves a #1 vote?
We move Jordan Lynch into the #2 spots after—for the 2nd time this year—he broke the NCAA record for rushing yards in a game by a quarterback. Lynch had 321 yards against lowly Western Michigan. He was just 5 of 17 passing in bad weather conditions but he had 3 rushing TDs, making him a member of the very elite 20/20 club. Now that Lynch is getting lots of attention, should we mention that this is the only place you would have seen Lynch in the top 5 the entire season? Yes, we should. Dropping a spot is last year's winner Johnny Manziel, whose A&M team lost its fourth game. Manziel had just one TD on the day.
Up two spots to #4 is Braxton Miller, who, by keeping Ohio State undefeated, has worked his way back into consideration as a finalist. Miller had a passing day similar to Lynch but rushed for 153 yards against Michigan and tallied 5 touchdowns in total. He edges past Marcus Mariota of Oregon who threw 2 more interceptions against Oregon State but did have a great clutch fourth-down touchdown pass.
SportsRatings Week 14 Heisman Race
- Jameis Winston, QB Florida State (12-0; beat Florida 37-7)
LW: 19-31 61.3% 327yd 3TD 1int 5rsh 8yd 1.6av 0TD 0fmb
TOT: 218-317 68.8% 3490yd 34TD 8int 67rsh 134yd 2.0av 3TD 1fmb
- [up 1] Jordan Lynch, QB N. Illinois (12-0; beat Western Michigan 33-14)
LW: 5-17 29.4% 39yd 1TD 0int 27rsh 321yd 12av 3TD 0fmb
TOT: 212-329 64.4% 2457yd 22TD 5int 248rsh 1755yd 7.1av 20TD 1fmb 1recTD
- [dn 1] Johnny Manziel, QB Texas A&M (8-4; lost to Missouri 28-21)
LW: 24-35 68.6% 195yd 1TD 0int 11rsh 21yd 1.9av 0TD 0fmb
TOT: 270-391 69.1% 3732yd 33TD 13int 133rsh 686yd 5.2av 8TD 1fmb
- [up 2] Braxton Miller, QB Ohio State (12-0; beat Michigan 42-41)
LW: 6-15 40.0% 133yd 2TD 1int 16rsh 153yd 9.6av 3TD 0fmb
TOT: 138-210 65.7% 1759yd 21TD 5int 132rsh 891yd 6.8av 8TD 4fmb
- Marcus Mariota, QB Oregon (10-2; beat Oregon State 36-35)
LW: 17-34 50.0% 285yd 3TD 2int 7rsh 53yd 7.6av 0TD 0fmb
TOT: 227-360 63.1% 3412yd 30TD 4int 81rsh 582yd 7.2av 9TD 4fmb
- [up 1] Bryce Petty, QB Baylor (10-1; beat TCU 41-38)
LW: 19-38 50.0% 206yd 2TD 1int 9rsh -5yd -.6av 1TD 0fmb
TOT: 199-319 62.4% 3557yd 28TD 2int 73rsh 168yd 2.3av 11TD 4fmb
- [dn 3] Tajh Boyd, QB Clemson (10-2; lost to South Carolina 31-17)
LW: 19-27 70.4% 225yd 0TD 2int 15rsh 16yd 1.1av 1TD 1fmb
TOT: 252-373 67.6% 3473yd 29TD 9int 134rsh 273yd 2.0av 9TD 2fmb
- A.J. McCarron, QB Alabama (11-1; lost to Auburn 34-28)
- Teddy Bridgewater, QB Louisville (10-1; no game last week)
- Brandin Cooks, WR Oregon St
- Melvin Gordon, RB Wisconsin
- Aaron Murray, QB Georgia
- Sean Mannion, QB Oregon St
- Jadeveon Clowney, DE South Carolina
- Marqise Lee, WR USC
Bryce Petty of Baylor had a decent day in a close win over TCU and moves up to #6, while Tajh Boyd of Clemson drops three from #4 to #7 due to Clemson's 2nd loss; Boyd threw the ball well in general but had two interceptions and a fumble on the day.
Falling out: With Alabama no longer undefeated, AJ McCarron drops off our consideration list, and Teddy Bridgewater slips out, too.
Winston, Lynch, Miller, and Petty are in action over the final weekend, while Manziel, Mariota, and Boyd are done until bowl time. Miller could slip into the top three with a great performance against Michigan State, and Petty could unseat Mariota in our "final 5", and technically the top spot is still up for grabs mostly depending on Thursday's news...but in the end we might go with the on-field action only, putting an asterisk by Winston's name. As long as he doesn't mess up against Duke, he'll stay #1 and we can rescind it later by decree if needed.