2011 Heisman Betting Preview

First off lets take a look at a few selected odds to get familiar with the candidates.

3-1 Andrew Luck, Stanford
6-1 Denard Robinson, Michigan; LaMichael James, Oregon; Landry Jones, Oklahoma; Marcus Lattimore, South Carolina
11-1 Justin Blackmon, Ohlahoma State
12-1 Trent Richardson, Alabama
15-1 Kellen Moore, Boise State; Ryan Broyles, Oklahoma
33-1 Aaron Murray, Georgia
60-1 John Brantley

Can't win a Heisman with this beard
You can’t win a Heisman with a beard like this.

Starting at the top, Luck is a bad bet to win this year’s trophy. First off, there is absolutely no value in any candidate at 3-1. More importantly, do we really believe that Stanford can repeat last year’s incredible year? Stanford won the Pac10 and won a BCS bowl game. This year, they lost their head coach and they have a big target on their backs from everyone they will play. Games are gonna be tougher and Luck will face more pressure than he has ever faced before. He will be invited to the ceremony but when the team around him falters, he will finish behind some national championship contenders like…

Or a jacket like this.
Or a jacket like this.

LaMichael James and Landry Jones. These two are the superstars of the #1 and #3 ranked teams in the country. They will be strong contenders for the trophy also but I still don’t like the value you get on them at 6-1. Also I don’t have either of these teams in the championship game this season after they both suffer early losses. LSU will bottle up James. Remember last year’s title game when James had only 49 yards rushing in the defeat. It was about half of his next lowest rushing total for the season and only the second time all season he didn’t carry it into the end zone. This is what SEC defenses do to teams west of the Mississippi River. (Yes I am completely ignoring the season high 4 receptions and 2 receiving TDs he scored.) I think Jones will be looking at a similar fate. A loss during the tough early schedule of Tulsa, @ FSU, and Missouri will put him off the bandwagon early. The Sooners will fight their way back into contention later in the season but by then it might be too late. Of course that still puts them ahead of guys who won’t be close to competing for a championship like…

Or a running back coach like this.
Or a running back coach like this.

Denard Robinson and Marcus Lattimore. Robinson is probably the worst bet on this list. Yes he put up incredible numbers last year in the Rich Rodriguez spread offense, but he will not shine nearly as bright in Al Borges’ pro-style offense. It will take too long of an adjustment period and Michigan is not good enough to have him at the top of the Sportscenter playlist each Saturday night. Lattimore has a different problem. He will put up decent stats most of the season, but it is almost impossible to put up superhuman numbers against that SEC schedule. Last year he had games of 11 rushes for 30 yards in a loss at Arkansas and 14 rushes for 33 yards in a loss at Auburn. Expect similar things this year. He will put up some big numbers in blowout wins, but some god awful numbers in tough SEC losses. Besides noone thinks the Ol’ Ball Coach would let a running back put up incredible numbers like…

Or a mugshot like this.
Or a mugshot like this.

Justin Blackmon. After Andrew Luck, he is probably the best player in the NCAA this year. He will pile up some monster stats this year as Oklahoma State throws the ball around in weekly shootouts. He finished the regular season with 102 receptions and 1665 receiving yards last year despite missing a game. He had at least 100 yards and a touchdown every single game last season. If Oklahoma State remains in title contention going into the Oklahoma game in December, then Blackmon will be a force to be reckoned with. I like him at 11-1, but I don’t think he will win it. 6 of the last 7 Heisman winners, played in the National Championship after winning. Which is why a slightly better bet is…

Or a body like...
Or a body like…jesus nevermind. I am not saying anything bad about Trent in case I ever meet him in a dark alley.

Trent Richardson. Bama fans have been singing his praises for years now. They all say he was a better back than Mark Ingram as Ingram was leading them to the championship. Now it is his turn to prove it. I think Bama goes to New Orleans this year and Richardson has a good season. The SEC schedule will be tough and Richardson won’t have as stunning a resume as guys like Blackmon, but he will get a boost like Ingram did when they went undefeated. He just needs all the other guys out there to suffer a loss or two. Unfortunately for him, his candidacy depends on no other participants in the title game putting up better numbers and I don’t see it happening. The 2011 Heisman trophy will be going to…

You need Heisman moments like this.

Or drives like this.

Kellen Moore. That’s right. Boise State is going to the title game and bringing a Heisman trophy to a blue field. Moore is set to become college footballs all time winningest quarterback this year. He has thrown for 3400 yards for 3 straight seasons. He has been All-American twice, he was a Heisman finalist last year. I expect 4,000 yards passing, 40 TDs, and an undefeated season from Moore. I expect a monster game versus Georgia in the opener. He put up 200 yards and 3 TDs in the opener against VaTech last year and that was a better team that this years Dawgs. When he throws for 300 yards and 3 TDs against an SEC defense, Moore will officially vault to the top of the Heisman candidate list and will not falter throughout the season. The Broncos have a cakewalk schedule after Georgia and I suspect that Moore will be left in blowout games a little bit longer than last year to make a point for his candidacy.

So who do you think will win the Heisman this year?

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