Mandel's Heisman Top 5: Not much separates Boykin & Fournette

November 1, 2015

I’ve had Leonard Fournette and Trevone Boykin 1-2 in some order for six straight weeks. They’re both fantastic players and there’s really not much separating them. In fact, it makes you realize just how difficult it is to compare players from two different positions. 

1. LSU RB Leonard Fournette. He remains No. 1 in large part because his 193.1 yards per game average is so much higher than any other runner’s. This week’s huge Alabama game could well swing the race for him.

2. TCU QB Trevone Boykin. Not only did he rack up 472 total yards and four TDs in Thursday’s rout of West Virginia but he threw in a highlight flip into the end zone and a run so nasty the opposing coach high-fived him.

3. Stanford RB Christian McCaffrey. Wazzu held McCaffrey in check most of the night, but he still managed 136 total yards, including a 30-yard dash on Stanford’s go-ahead drive. He remains No. 1 in all-purpose yardage.


4. Baylor WR Corey Coleman. The nation’s receiving touchdowns leader (18) has a chance to further distinguish himself Thursday night at Kansas State while playing with a new quarterback, freshman Jarrett Stidham.

5. Memphis QB Paxton Lynch. Following another productive day against Tulane (26 of 42 for 343 yards and a TD; seven carries for 43 yards), Lynch soon squares off with fellow contender Houston QB Greg Ward Jr.

Stewart Mandel is a senior college sports columnist for He covered college football and basketball for 15 years at Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter @slmandel and Facebook. Send emails and Mailbag questions to