Now, before the 401(k) is withdrawn and placed on one of these Penn State football players, it’s a good idea to take a look at the competition in the field. Unfortunately, it’s a bit daunting.
Caleb Williams- USC QB (+500)
Williams is attempting to become only the second player in NCAA history to repeat as the Heisman Trophy winner (Ohio State’s Archie Griffin accomplished this feat in 1974-1975. Caleb has an outstanding chance to do this in what will undoubtedly be his final year in college. There is a reason that he’s 5-1.
Drake Maye- North Carolina QB (+1000)
Maye was actually in Drew Allar’s shoes last season, as he replaced UNC’s career leader in passing, Sam Howell. He threw for 4,231 yards, 37 TDs to 7 INTs and added 698 yards of rushing along with seven TDs on the ground. However, with the departure of Offensive Coordinator Phil Logno to the University of Wisconsin, as well as two of his leading receivers, Maye could struggle a little more than what people expect.
Kyle McCord- Ohio State QB (+2000)
In many ways, Ohio State’s situation mirrors that of Penn State’s. Both are replacing successful QBs with highly touted prospects and expectations are high on both (Ohio State is as high as No. 2 in the nation in many polls). Both have amazing running backs to relieve the pressure on the air assualt. Where the comparison differs, signifcantly, is who these QBs are going to throw the ball to. McCord has arugably the best wide receiver corps in the country, starring Marvin Harrison Jr. and Julian Fleming.
While many Penn State football fans talk about a supposed “bias” against the Nittany Lions, I think that the Heisman Trophy is living proof of that. Before the award became “Which QB can throw for the most yards and TD’s in an SEC/Big12/Pac12 school”, there were several worthy Penn State canididates that didn’t quite win.
It used to be if a running back rushed for 2,000 yards, he was a shoo-in to win. How else do you explain Ki-Jana Carter, with 1539 yards on 198 carries (7.8), 23 TDs come in second to Rashaan Salaam and 2055 yards on 298 carries (6.9) 24 TDs.
But, when a Penn State running back Larry Johnson goes off for 2,087 yards, 271 carries (7.7) and 20 TDs, then suddenly that’s not good enough and Carson Palmer wins the award. Hell, LJ even came in third that season, behind Iowa QB Brad Banks.
So, because of this bias alone, I would make any Penn State football player a long shot for the Heisman. But, for the odds that are being set, and the conditions that should exist, the odds that you see before the season starts will probaby be the best they are all year.
It wouldn’t be surprising at all to see two Nittany Lions sitting in The Downtown Atheletic Club in the beginning of December.