Heisman hopefuls: Who will take college football’s highest honor in 2015?
The Heisman Trophy is college football’s most prestigious individual award. The iconic trophy recognizes the most outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity. The winner is selected by a combination of sports journalists and prior winners who each receive three votes; fans also receive one collective note through an ESPN.com poll.
The phrase “most outstanding” can be interpreted in many ways. Over the last two decades, it has essentially meant the best quarterback or running back out of the country’s consensus top 10 teams. This season features a deep list of potential candidates at some of college football’s most storied programs. The top three most likely Heisman winners of the 2015 season are: Trevone Boykin of Texas Christian University, Nick Chubb of the University of Georgia, and Cardale Jones of Ohio State University.
Boykin is TCU’s starting quarterback and finished fourth in Heisman voting last season. As a junior, he threw for 3,901 yards and 33 touchdowns and rushed for 707 yards and 8 more TD’s. He led one of the most prolific offenses in the country and dominated opponents with both his arm and his legs. Boykin returns as a senior with some serious hype. The Horned Frogs are ranked as the third best team in the country according to the Associated Press, and they have legitimate national championship aspirations.
Nick Chubb is the Southeastern Conference’s leading returning rusher. As a freshman, the Georgia native began the season as Todd Gurley’s backup but took over the starting role as Gurley struggled with injuries and a suspension. Chubb rushed for 1,547 yards and 14 touchdowns last season. He returns to campus as the clear cut number one option in the backfield.
Cardale Jones only started three games for the Ohio State Buckeye’s last season, but he quickly became one of their most dangerous weapons. Jones starting 2014 as the third string quarterback, but injuries to both players in front of him thrust Jones into the starting role just in time for the post season. He managed 742 passing yards and 5 touchdowns while leading the Buckeyes to victories in the Big Ten Championship against Wisconsin, in the college football playoff against Alabama, and in the National Championship game against Oregon. Jones’ biggest competition could be teammate J.T. Barrett. Last season, Barrett finished fifth in Heisman voting. His year was cut short due to injury, leaving the door open for Jones to prove his worth. If Jones can hold onto the starting spot over Barrett he will merit serious Heisman consideration.
Who do you think will walk away with the 2015 Heisman Trophy? Feel free to comment or find me on Twitter @Andrew_Morse4