Total Points (with first place votes in parentheses)
1. Cameron Newton, QB, Auburn — 35 (11)
2. LaMichael James, RB, Oregon — 22 (1)
3. Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State — 17 (1)
4. Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford — 2
5. (tie) Denard Robinson, QB, Michigan — 1
5. (tie) Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State — 1
About the poll
The HeismanPundit.com Heisman Poll is made up of 13 Heisman voters from across the country. They vote for three players each week. Tabulations are made on a 3-2-1 basis, with three points awarded for a first-place vote, two points for a second-place vote and one point for a third-place vote. The last two years the Heismanpundit poll was the most accurate in the country, picking five of the top six finishers in the Heisman vote in 2008 and the top four in 2009.
Members of the panel include: Mike Bianchi of the Orlando Sentinel, Teddy Greenstein and Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune, Olin Buchanan and Tom Dienhart of Rivals.com, Jenni Carlson of The Oklahoman, Bruce Feldman of ESPN.com, J.B. Morris of ESPN the Magazine, Austin Murphy, B.J. Schecter and Stewart Mandel of Sports Illustrated, plus Dick Weiss of the New York Daily News.
Chris Huston, owner of Heismanpundit.com, coordinates and also votes in the weekly poll.
Newton maintains his comfortable lead despite the NCAA investigation that shadows his candidacy. It appears most voters gave him the benefit of the doubt and that he was the beneficiary of a ‘rallying effect’. James and Moore are in their usual spots, ready to pounce if Newton goes down. It looks to me like Andrew Luck has a good chance of cracking the top five before it’s all through, but it’s doubtful that he gets to New York.
From a Voter
“In the wake of Reggie Bush being stripped of the Heisman Trophy due to integrity issues, I’m going to stay away from casting my vote for Cam Newton. It’s not worth it to me. Newton has legal issues, potential NCAA issues and who knows what other issues on his resume. Because of his arrest on domestic violence charges, I won’t be voting for LaMichael James, either” — Mike Bianchi, Orlando Sentinel
Heisman Game of the Week
Georgia at Auburn — This week’s games are slim pickings as far as impact on the Heisman race goes. But this game is important for a couple reasons. First, we’ll see if Newton can stay focused following the off-field distractions (the Chattanooga game didn’t count in that regard) and, second, a win here will guarantee that Auburn plays in the SEC title game, which gives Newton one more chance to pile up some numbers and impress voters.
Player to Watch
Andrew Luck, Stanford— There were many who thought Stanford would take a tumble following the departure of Heisman runner up Toby Gerhart. But the Cardinal are even better this year thanks to the development of Luck, who is probably the premier pro-style passer in the country. He has a chance to give Stanford back-to-back top five Heisman finishes, a seemingly unthinkable accomplishment just a few years ago. He’ll be a prime Heisman candidate next season if he doesn’t skip out to the NFL draft.
This Week in Heisman History
John Cappelletti rushed for 220 yards and three touchdowns, including a brilliant 27-yarder–his signature play that season–to break a 29-29 deadlock, as Penn State beat North Carolina State, 35-29, in 1973. Cappelletti would go on to win the Heisman Trophy that year, beating out Ohio State tackle John Hicks and Texas fullback Roosevelt Leaks.