The regular season has just two weeks left meaning Heisman Candidates need to make their move now to impress voters. Statistics are great for September and October but moments in November win the Heisman. The award is driven but quarterbacks but a few other players are starting to make their cases to be considered. Whoever performs at the highest level over the last two weeks of the regular season and conference championship weekend will likely win the award. Bryce Young is likely out of the race after losing two games so we will have someone new hoisting the award in December.
1 – CJ Stroud (QB, Ohio State) Stats: 2,888 Passing Yards, 34 Touchdowns, 4 Interceptions, 188.2 QB Rating – The Ohio State quarterback has been one of the most efficient quarterbacks in the country over the past two seasons. Stroud benefits from the weapons around him but he is still one of the best players in the country. Stroud limits his mistakes and has excellent ball placement. Stroud lacks a key victory for his resume which could come next weekends when the Buckeyes host Michigan. A win over the Wolverines and a solid performance would likely keep him atop the Heisman leaderboard.
2 – Hendon Hooker (QB, Tennessee) Stats: 2,750 Passing Yards, 29 Total Touchdowns, 2 Interceptions, 181.8 QB Rating – Hendon Hooker helped bring Tennessee back to relevancy after two decades of mediocrity. Hooker is a dynamic player with explosive play potential and he limits his mistakes. Tennessee defeated Alabama for the first time since 2006 mainly due to Hooker’s performance in the game. Tennessee has two remaining games against Vanderbilt and South Carolina which does not given Hooker many chances to rise in the rankings. The Volunteers loss to Georgia will likely prevent Hooker from winning the Heisman.
3 – Blake Corum (RB, Michigan) Stats: 1,349 Yards, 18 Total Touchdowns, 5.9 Yards Per Carry – Blake Corum is one of the best running backs in the country and a main reason why Michigan is undefeated. Corum has totaled 1,114 rushing yards in his seven Big Ten games this season. Michigan’s schedule features Illinois and Ohio State with a possible Big Ten Championship looming. If Michigan is going to win the Big Ten this season, Corum is going to be the driving factor. A strong performance against Ohio State would launch him up the board and likely make him the leader.
4 – Drake Maye (QB, North Carolina) Stats: 3,412 Passing Yards, 39 Total Touchdowns, 3 Interceptions, 178.9 QB Rating – Drake Maye has been one of the highest performing quarterbacks this season. Maye is just a freshman which took him longer to burst onto the scene compared to established players. He has thrown for more than 300 yards in seven different games this season. Maye’s best chance to rise in the rankings is to have a strong performance against Clemson in the ACC Championship. Maye will certainly be one of the front runners heading into 2023.
5 – Caleb Williams (QB, USC) Stats: 3,010 Passing Yards, 37 Total Touchdowns, 2 Interceptions, 166.4 QB Rating – Caleb Williams was expected to be a front runner after transferring to USC with Jordan Addison following his lead. USC has been a good team but has lacked the dominance many expected with a high powered offense. Williams has struggled with his accuracy at times completing just 63.7% of his passes. USC also lost to the only ranked team on their schedule. The Trojans and Williams will have an opportunity to build a strong Heisman candidacy and playoff resume with matchups looming against UCLA, Notre Dame and a potential Pac-12 Championship.
Honorable Mention: Stetson Bennett (QB, Georgia), Max Duggan (QB, TCU), Marvin Harrison Jr (WR, Ohio State), Chase Brown (RB, Illinois), Jalin Hyatt (WR, Tennessee),