Heisman Watch: Miami's Harris making his move
This isn't a ranking of the best players or the top NFL prospects. This is an attempt to put the finger on the pulse of the Heisman chase. Here are the current favorites at the moment, and this will change week after week with players moving in and out of the categories.
No current chance to win, but with finalist potential
QB Case Keenum, Jr. Houston
This week: Home vs. Texas Tech
Last week: 32-of-46 for 366 yards and three touchdowns and an interception, and five carries for 16 yards and a score in the win over Oklahoma State two weeks ago.
The hot quarterback at the moment, the junior got on the radar with his big performance in the win over Oklahoma State, and now he has a chance to make a huge national statement against Texas Tech. The numbers will be there — he'll be among the nation's leading passers all season long, but all that matters is this week's win. If he and the Cougars don't beat the Red Raiders, the Heisman chase will be over.
QB Todd Reesing, Sr. Kansas
This week: Home vs. Southern Miss
Last week: 28-of-41 for 338 yards and three touchdowns, and eight carries for 51 yards in the win over Duke.
The leader of the nation's No. 3 offense, he's not on anyone's radar at the moment, but that could change in a few weeks. He's building the necessary stats for the Heisman resumé, and it'll all need to build up to the battles against Oklahoma and Texas Tech at the end of October.
On the radar, but the world is looking for more
RB Jahvid Best, Jr. California
This week: at Oregon
Last week: 26 carries for 131 yards and five touchdowns, and three catches for 17 yards in the win over Minnesota.
Scoring five touchdowns in a game will generate a buzz, and even though the big performance came against Minnesota on national TV, the Heisman candidacy depends on the next two weeks. If he leads the Bears to wins at Oregon and against USC, he's the front runner. However, his overall rushing numbers might not end up being that great since he'll be limited in the later blowouts against the mediocre Pac 10 teams.
QB Sam Bradford, Jr. Oklahoma
This week: Out Injured
Last week: Out Injured
He's throwing again, but he might not be rushed back with Landry Jones doing a good job filling in under center. At some point, he's expected to be back, and the hope is that he'll be ready for the showdown against Texas Oct. 17. If he comes back and makes Oklahoma special again, and if he leads the way back to another Big 12 title, he'll be in New York. He might not win another Heisman, but he could be a finalist.
QB Jimmy Clausen, Jr. Notre Dame
This week: at Purdue.
Last week: 22-of-31 for 300 yards and two touchdowns in the win over Michigan State.
No one is playing better. Clausen is second in the nation in passing efficiency and is tenth in total offense. He has a mild case of turf-toe, but it's not expected to give him much of a problem. However, the loss of star WR Michael Floyd will be a problem. The Irish are loaded at receiver, and the passing game will keep on going, but a win over USC is a must for Clausen to have a shot at going to New York.
QB Tate Forcier, Fr. Michigan
This week: Home vs. Indiana
Last week: 7-of-13 for 68 yards, six carries for 5 yards in the win over Eastern Michigan.
Numbers aren't going to define Forcier's season. Being the leader of a resurgent Michigan program will be what keeps him in the spotlight, and he needs more wins. He'll make a slew of true freshman mistakes and he'll have some clunker games, but it Michigan keeps winning, he'll be the face of the team. Here's the bigger problem: Pat White. White never came close to the Heisman as good as he was at West Virginia, and now Forcier is filling the same role under Rich Rodriguez.
QB Jevan Snead, Jr. Ole Miss
This week: at South Carolina
Last week: 16-of-28 for 209 yards and three touchdowns, and three carries for 25 yards in the win over SE Louisiana.
He hasn't been great so far, but he hasn't had to be. Now he has to be special. The SEC season kicks off for the Rebels Thursday night against South Carolina, and this will be his chance to make a Heisman statement on national TV. The Alabama game on Oct. 10 will mean everything for Ole Miss and Snead's Heisman chances.
The true favorites
QB Jacory Harris, Soph. Miami
This week: at Virginia Tech
Last week: 20-of-25 for 270 yards and three touchdowns in the win over Georgia Tech.