What a week can do.
Last Monday we were debating how close the margin was between Johnny Manziel and Heisman front runner Collin Klein. This week we are doing the same thing, only the roles have reversed.
For the last month on HeismanPundit the line has been “barring a late season collapse” for Collin Klein. The collapse has happened and freshman Johnny Football has been the surprise benefactor. Manziel definitely deserves the current distinction as Heisman frontrunner but his quest to make history comes clear out of the blue for most pundits.
As we all know, a freshman has never won the Heisman. Manziel’s bid to become the first has fallen into place due in equal parts to his exemplary performance as well as the poor performances by the Heisman contenders ahead of him. This was Heisman race was not Manziel’s to lose for the first 11 weeks of the season. Up until this week Manziel did not control his own destiny. Until now.
The Heisman hype is now on the shoulders of the redshirt freshman with just four quarters in the regular season remaining. Manziel and Texas A&M will face a rudderless Missouri team this weekend to finish out the regular season. Manziel is sure to put up a strong performance.
Interestingly enough the Heisman race could be set this upcoming Saturday if Manziel shoots the lights out right from the get go. Klein, who is off this week, faces Texas on December 1st while Kenjon Barner could play in the Pac 12 championship game if Stanford loses to UCLA. Long shot Aaron Murray of Georgia has a rivalry game against Georgia Tech and the SEC championship game to prove that he at least deserves an invite. Outside of those three, Manziel, Manti Te’o and Braxton Miller will have finished their regular seasons (and Miller’s season period).
So with two weeks left, who is going to make the trip to New York City? For starters HP and I. We’ll be in town the whole week covering the lead up to the Heisman and we’ll be appearing in print, on radio, and on TV all over the place so be sure to look out for us. As far as the finalists go I think it will be a four man race with Manziel, Klein, Te’o and Miller making the trip.
On Friday, Ill be writing about the possibility of one more Saturday shake-up and if Klein has one more chance to win the Heisman.
–If Johnny Manziel wins the Heisman he will have the opportunity to break a second Heismandment, that there will never be another two time Heisman winner.
–We know that only two undefeated teams remain, Ohio State and Notre Dame. More surprising is that only one team remains defeated, Southern Mississippi. The Golden Eagles went 12-2 last year, won their conference championship against an undefeated Houston team and beat Nevada in the Hawaii Bowl. They need to beat Memphis next week to stave of a defeated season.
–Matt Barkley leads the nation in touchdowns with 36; this speaks to his Heisman acumen. He has also thrown 15 interceptions good for second most in the nation and his team is just 7-4. This does not speak to his Heisman acumen.
–The Pac 12 has a quarterback protection problem. California, Colorado and UCLA are the top three sack allowing schools. Washington and Washington State are tied for eighth.
–Maryland is leaving the ACC for the Big 10. This excites exactly no one.
–Colby Cameron of La Tech threw two interceptions last week breaking his season long interceptionless streak.