It's Jameis Winston's trophy to lose, but the Heisman Trophy Trust really wants us to think that other people have a shot. Five others, in fact.
The Heisman Trust announced six finalists for the trophy that will be given out Saturday evening. It's Winston, the Florida State quarterback, Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch, Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel, Auburn running back Tre Mason, Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron and Boston College running back Andre Williams.
Winston is the prohibitive favorite. So much so that one sports book was offering 1/150 odds on him to win the Heisman Trophy. That means you'd have to bet $150 to win $1. Any doubts about his candidacy for the award should have been allayed when Florida State Attorney Willie Meggs announced on Wednesday that Winston would not be charged in the sexual assault case from December of 2012 that he had been named in.
Winston's undefeated ACC champion Seminoles are playing Mason's Auburn Tigers in the BCS Championship Game on Jan. 6. When he wins, he'll be the second consecutive redshirt freshman winner of the trophy after Manziel last year. For the season, Winston has thrown for 3,820 yards and 38 touchdowns with 10 interceptions.
Here are the other candidates' stats in case you want to concoct an argument that any of them have a chance:
Lynch has thrown for 2,676 yards passing with 23 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He has also ran for 1,881 yards and 22 touchdowns, but his team's loss in the MAC title game cripples his chances.
Manziel may still be the best player in college football, but he's been hampered by injuries and his Aggies lost four games this season. He passed for 3,732 yards, 33 touchdowns and 13 interceptions, and ran for 686 yards, less than half of his rushing total of last season.
Mason has been a known commodity all year in the SEC, but exploded onto the scene in the SEC championship when he ran for 304 yards on 46 carries against Missouri. On the season, he has 283 carries for 1,621 yards and 22 touchdowns.
McCarron might have had his Heisman moment against Auburn on that 99-yard pass to Amari Cooper, but the loss to the Tigers and lost shot at a third straight BCS title hurts him. He's thrown for 2,676 yards, 26 touchdowns and five interceptions.
Williams is the nation's leading rusher but got dinged up in his team's final game of the season at Syracuse and rushed for only 29 yards on nine carries. He has 2,102 yards on the season and 17 touchdowns.
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- Johnny Manziel
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