Who Will Win The Heisman?

Stanford QB Andrew Luck is a solid +225 favorite to take home the 2011 Heisman Trophy. Based on Luck's stats in 2010, the low odds are definitely justified.

The Cardinal signal-caller completed 70.7% of his passes last season for 3,338 yards, 38 touchdowns and only 8 interceptions.  His QB rating for the season was an incredible 170.2.  Not only that, but Luck was the runner-up in the Heisman voting to Auburn QB Cam Newton.  To say that Andrew Luck is the front-runner for the 2011 Heisman Trophy is an understatement.  Luck will have to face defenses with a new head coach at the helm, David Shaw, now that Jim Harbaugh has bolted to the NFL, but it's doubtful that Shaw will make any changes that will hurt Luck's quest for the top individual player award in college football.  The +225 odds on Luck might actually be too high on the Stanford quarterback.

Three players, Michigan QB Denard Robinson, Oklahoma QB Landry Jones and South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore, are co-second choices in the sportsbook to win the Heisman.  All three are going off at +500 and all three have a chance to win the trophy, but the odds may not be justified for Lattimore and Robinson.  

In regards to Lattimore, although the Gamecocks don't have to take on LSU or Alabama this season, the Tigers and Tide sport arguably the two best defenses in the SEC, they do face Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi State and Arkansas on the road.  They also take on the tough Florida Gators at home.  Lattimore is going to have to not only have an exceptional season in order to win the award, but he's also going to have to hope that Luck's, well, luck, runs out way on the other side of mainland USA.

Lattimore has a better shot of winning the Heisman than Denard Robinson, however.  Robinson should look like a front-runner in four out of the Wolverines' first five games against Western Michigan, Eastern Michigan, San Diego State and Minnesota, but Notre Dame, whom Michigan plays on September 10, will be much better defensively this season and the Wolverines first road game against Northwestern will not be as easy as it looks.  In fact, Robinson will have to do his work on the road in four out of Michigan's final seven games and two of the Wolverines' final three home games, the final two games of the season, are against the Black Shirts of Nebraska and what is sure to be a pumped up Ohio State Buckeyes defense.

Out of the co-second choices, Oklahoma QB Landry Jones figures to have the best shot of taking home the trophy.  Jones is a QB and therefore is comparable to the early front-runner, Andrew Luck.  Not only that, but there is no Nebraska to deal with in the Big 12, Conference this season and the Sooners' non-conference schedule is ridiculously easy after Florida State.  If Jones can punish the Seminoles on the road on September 17, and take care of business against Texas, Texas A&M and Oklahoma State, not only could the Sooners' signal-caller could be accepting the Heisman Trophy but Oklahoma could be on their way to the BCS Championship.

The only other player going off at single-digits on the board is Oregon running back LaMichael James.  At +600, James is offering more value than Lattimore, Jones, Luck and Robinson, but he might not be a better guy to back than either Luck or Jones.  James was exceptional last season in those space-age Duck uniforms in the Pac-10 but it's doubtful he repeats that success in the same uniform this season in the Pac-12.  Why?  For starters, Oregon QB Darron Thomas, who is at +3000 in the sportsbook to win the Heisman Trophy, will be counted on to do much more this season than he did last season.  That will take carries away from James.  Not only that, but the Pac-12 is being underrated by football fans…again.  Arizona and USC will be good, Arizona State, California, Washington and UCLA will be better than last season and Stanford will battle Oregon for a BCS berth.  All of it adds up to James having a great but not great enough for a Heisman Trophy season.

Check out the players, with odds, listed in the sportsbook to win the 2011 Heisman Trophy.

  • Andrew Luck              +225
  • Denard Robinson        +500
  • Marcus Lattimore        +500
  • Landry Jones               +500
  • LaMichael James         +600
  • Justin Blackmon          +1000
  • Ryan Broyles              +1200
  • Trent Richardson        +1200
  • Knile Davis                 +1600
  • Robert Griffen III       +1600
  • Chris Polk                   +2000
  • Brandon Weeden        +2500
  • Case Keenum              +2500
  • Michael Floyd             +2500
  • Darron Thomas           +3000
  • Nick Foles                   +3000
  • Kirk Cousins               +3500
  • Matt Barkley               +3500
  • Aaron Murray             +5000
  • Danny O'Brien           +6000
  • Greg Reid                   +7500