The 10 Heismandments

Heismanpundit.com has compiled its 10 rules that govern the Heisman race –”The 10 Heismandments,” if you will.

The more Heismandments that apply to a player in a given season, the better his chances are of winning.

1. The winner must be a quarterback, a running back, or a multi-threat athlete.

2. Juniors and seniors have the overwhelming advantage in the Heisman race and, as a general rule, will win over an underclassman if all other factors are equal.  Underclassmen can overcome this disadvantage only through extraordinary single-season production.

3. The winner must produce good numbers in high-profile games on TV.

4. The winner must have some prior name recognition.

5. The winner must be one or more of the following three: (a) The top player on a national title contender. (b) A player who puts up good numbers for a traditional power with good record or (c) A player who puts up superlative single-season or career numbers on a good team, or produces numbers that are way out ahead of his Heisman competitors.

6. The winner cannot be considered an obvious product of his team’s system.

7. If you are a quarterback, running back or multi-purpose athlete at one of the following schools–Notre Dame, USC, Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Ohio State, Michigan, Miami, Florida and Florida State–you have a good chance to win if you have a very good statistical season, are an upperclassmen and your team wins at least 9 games.

8. Statistical benchmarks exist for each position to help voters gauge a player’s ‘Heisman worthiness’.

a. A running back who is NOT on a traditional power or a national championship contender usually must gain at least 2,000 yards.  This hefty yardage requirement for such backs has risen a bit over the years as the longer regular season has made it more commonplace.  A back on a traditional power or national title contender, must gain at least 1,600 yards. In either case, the back must score at least 15 touchdowns.

b. Dual-threat quarterbacks must produce at least 3,500 yards of total offense and 35 combined touchdowns and have a passer rating of 140 or better.  Traditional pocket passers must have a passer rating over 160, at least 3,500 yards passing and a touchdown-to-interception ratio of at least 4-to-1.

c. A multi-purpose athlete/receiver has to score at least 20 touchdowns and can only win by producing spectacular plays on special teams, specifically kick and punt returns.

9. There will never be another two-time Heisman winner.

10. The winner must be likeable.