This could be a key week in the race for the Heisman Trophy with quarterback J.J. McCarthy leading Michigan against Penn State and Washington quarterback Michael Penix Jr. likely being tested by two-time defending Pac-12 champion Utah.
In many years, a Florida State-Miami game would be a perfect time for a Heisman Trophy candidate to make a splash and move up in the Heisman Trophy odds. However, FSU quarterback Jordan Travis could be hurt by Miami’s struggles this season.
The top five players in the odds of winning the Heisman Trophy are quarterbacks, with Penix and Oregon’s Bo Nix leading the way.
When looking at the best college football teams, Georgia (+250), Michigan (+250), Florida State (+600) and Ohio State (+700) not only lead the way with the best odds to win the 2023 NCAA football championship, but they also have Heisman Trophy candidates.
Here’s a look at the latest edition of the Heisman risers and fallers of the 2023 season.
Pac-12 Passers Leading the Way
Three Pac-12 players are in the top seven in the passing efficiency ratings.
Nix comes in fourth as he has completed 78.1% of his passes for 2,723 yards with 25 touchdowns and two interceptions. That is only good for the No. 2 spot in the Heisman Trophy odds as Nix is priced at +200 to win college football’s most prestigious individual award.
Penix is the Heisman front-runner with +150 odds, according to our college football odds. He leads all Football Bowl Subdivision players with 3,201 passing yards for the unbeaten Huskies.
Reigning Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams has a better passer rating than Penix, but the struggles by USC will keep Williams from repeating as the Heisman Trophy winner.
Milroe, Daniels Put on a Show
The passing numbers in the anticipated matchup between Alabama and LSU weren’t anything special as Heisman Trophy candidates Jalen Milroe of Alabama and Jayden Daniels each threw for 219 yards.
They did most of their damage with their legs. Milroe ran 20 times for 155 yards and four touchdowns. Daniels rushed 11 times for 163 yards and a touchdown.
Alabama came away with the 42-28 win to move a step closer to a spot in the SEC Championship Game.
However, when looking at the college football betting lines, both players are trending in the wrong direction when it comes to the Heisman Trophy odds.
Harrison Continues to Make His Move
Plenty of pass catchers probably deserve to be higher on the list of Heisman Trophy candidates.
An injury ended the hopes of Georgia tight end Brock Bowers, and now Ohio State receiver Marvin Harrison is left alone as the only non-quarterback who seems to have a chance to win the Heisman.
Harrison’s odds are now at +1600, and with a game remaining against Michigan, he has a chance for his Heisman moment.
Speaking of Michigan, running back Blake Corum’s chances to be a Heisman Trophy finalist seem to be fading as he is now at +10000 in the odds to win the Heisman.
Who’s Rising in the Heisman Trophy Race?
Oklahoma State running back Ollie Gordon is rising fast up the list of Heisman Trophy candidates.
Gordon has six straight 100-yard rushing games and he mixed in a game with more than 100 yards both as a runner and as a receiver.
FBS Leader in Rushing Yards:
🤠 Ollie Gordon II: 1,224 pic.twitter.com/1uR4FRjJOS
— PFF College (@PFF_College) November 5, 2023
His bid for a third straight game with more than 250 rushing yards came up short, but his 138 yards and two touchdowns played a key role in Oklahoma State’s 27-24 upset of Oklahoma. The could have been the final matchup between the rivals now that Oklahoma is about to leave the Big 12 for the SEC.
Georgia quarterback Carson Beck had a solid game with 254 yards while completing 21 of 32 passes. He has four touchdown passes and no interceptions in his last two games. His Heisman odds have moved to +1200.
Beck is still behind Michigan’s J.J. McCarthy in the Heisman race. McCarthy’s odds are now sitting at +800.
Who’s Falling in the Heisman Trophy Race?
Oklahoma’s Dillon Gabriel threw for 344 yards in the loss to Oklahoma State. However, in the last two games, he has one touchdown pass and two interceptions as the Sooners lost to Kansas and Oklahoma State. With +10000 odds to win the Heisman, he is no longer a factor in the race.
It is a similar deal for North Carolina quarterback Drake Maye. His odds tumbled to +12000 after being at +1600 in mid-October.
Matchup of the Week
- Michigan Wolverines (-5) at Penn State Nittany Lions
- Saturday, Nov. 11, Noon ET (FOX)
It will be interesting to see how Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy fares against the Penn State pass defense. The Nittany Lions are one of two Big Ten teams to have more interceptions than touchdown passes allowed.
Perhaps Penn State quarterback Drew Allar can steal some of the spotlight in this matchup that is Penn State’s final chance to stay in contention for a spot in the Big Ten title game. Those making NCAA football best bets will be keeping an eye on this matchup.
Questions Of The Day
Who is the most undervalued Heisman contender?
Oklahoma State running back Ollie Gordon wasn’t even showing up on many boards until this week, even though he is the leading rusher in the country.
Which Heisman contender is offering the best betting opportunities?
Keep an eye on the odds for Ohio State receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. as he is closing the gap on the top contenders each week.