Can AJ McCarron blaze a trail for Crimson Tide quarterbacks?

If not for the narrowest win in Heisman history in 2009, the Crimson Tide would still be seeking that elusive first trophy. It’s a curiosity that a team so rich in tradition has just one Heisman.

But could junior quarterback AJ McCarron be on the verge of making his own run at the trophy? After all, he is the efficient field general for the nation’s No. 1 team. He was the MVP of the BCS title game earlier this year and he’s been near-perfect so far this season, with 418 yards, six touchdown passes and no interceptions.

To do so, he’ll have to buck history. I don’t mean Heisman history.

More like Crimson Tide history.

For all the brilliant quarterbacks who have come through the school, not one of them has thrown for over 3,000 yards in a season. For all the national championship quarterbacks, not one has surpassed 20 touchdown tosses in a season.

You can’t win the Heisman in this day and age throwing for 2,987 yards and 20 touchdowns, as Greg McElroy did in 2010 for the Tide, no matter how many games your team wins. Twenty-five years ago, perhaps, but not today.

So this is McCarron’s challenge. He’s on pace for 2,834 passing yards and 39 touchdowns this year. Can he keep the touchdown pace going and increase his yardage? Can he convincingly shatter Bama’s all-time single-season passing marks? If he does that–and nothing less–then he’ll have a chance to be in the Heisman conversation at the season’s end.

I just don’t think he can win. Not with quarterbacks like Matt Barkley and Geno Smith in the race. It might take a more transcendant talent–and a more pass-happy offensive philosophy–for an Alabama quarterback to finally win a Heisman.

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About Heismanpundit

Chris Huston, A.K.A. ‘The Heisman Pundit‘, is a Heisman voter and the creator and publisher of, a site dedicated to analysis of the Heisman Trophy and college football. Dubbed “the foremost authority on the Heisman” by Sports Illustrated, HP is regularly quoted or cited during football season in newspapers across the country. He is also a regular contributor on sports talk radio and television.

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2 Responses to Can AJ McCarron blaze a trail for Crimson Tide quarterbacks?

  1. EagleTide September 11, 2012 at 8:56 am #

    Can’t argue with anything you said, but it is sad that folks think that way considering the QB’s that face the SEC teams are the ones that have to throw against teams that actually have defenses.

  2. Brett Anderson September 18, 2012 at 11:51 am #

    The way Alabama’s defense is playing, AJ is going to have a tough time playing all 4 quarters of a game. He is on a tear, but this week against Florida Atlantic, he will only play the first half. Maybe next week when they play Ole Miss, AJ will play the complete game to rack up the TD’s and passing yards.