Heisman Watch (12/1) Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State (Ranked No. 14)
Saturday’s 47-41 loss to No. 13 Oklahoma completed a regular season in which Justin Blackmon scored at least once in every game that he played in. His 1,665 yards and 18 touchdowns receiving both lead the nation, while his 102 receptions are second only to Oklahoma’s Ryan Broyles, who played in 12 games. It’s usually a long shot for a wide receiver to win the Heisman, and with this year’s quarterback competition it looks nearly impossible. But with 19 total scores through 11 games played, Blackmon deserves mention.
*All rankings listed are BCS, players listed alphabetically by last name
Last game: Eight catches for 105 yards and one touchdown receiving (13.1 YPC) vs. No. 13 Oklahoma
Next game: TBD Bowl Game
Stock: Down Slightly
Andy Dalton QB, TCU (Ranked No. 3)
Dalton’s three touchdowns against New Mexico were all the more impressive considering he did it in only one complete quarter of action. Dalton was sacked and fumbled during the second quarter, and came up with a minor elbow injury. With a 31-10 lead (en route to a 66-17 victory), head coach Gary Patterson decided to keep Dalton out for the rest of the game as a safety precaution. The win completes a regular season that saw Dalton throw for 26 touchdowns and 2,638 yards while running for 407 yards and another five scores. TCU has now finished 12-0 for the second straight season.
156 yards, three touchdowns passing (64.3 percent completed, 11.1 YPA) @ New Mexico
TBD Bowl Game
Stock: Up Slightly
LaMichael James, RB, Oregon (Ranked No. 2)
Coming off his last game, in which California held him scoreless for the first time all year, James had a bye week to rest his ankle. The bye seemed to help as James reverted back to his old ways, rushing for over 100 yards for the eighth time in his 10 games played. James’ two scores came early in the fourth quarter, extending a 34-22 lead and putting the game out of reach. His 19 rushing touchdowns rank second in the nation, and his 1,548 yards rushing place him in the top four, all this despite James playing in only 10 games to this point.
126 yards rushing, two touchdowns rushing (4.5 YPC), three catches for 20 yards receiving (6.7 YPC) vs. No. 21 Arizona
@ Oregon State
Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford (Ranked No. 4)
While Boise State and LSU losses helped put Stanford in a position to go to a more prominent bowl game, the Cardinal did their part by shutting out Oregon State 38-0. Luck threw four touchdown passes and now has 28 for the year. His 28th passing score broke the school record of 27 previously held by John Elway and Steve Stenstrom. Luck finished the regular season with over 3,000 passing yards, and is widely regarded as a top draft pick in next year’s NFL draft. He most likely won’t win the Heisman, but the aforementioned credentials could garner nomination.
305 yards, four touchdowns passing (70 percent completed, 10.2 YPA) vs. Oregon State
TBD Bowl Game
Stock: Up Slightly
Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State (Ranked No. 11)
Two missed field goals destroyed Boise State’s BCS hopes as the Broncos suffered a crushing overtime loss to No. 19 Nevada. Things initially looked promising, as Boise State jumped out to a first half 24-7 lead. However, the Wolfpack came back to tie the score at 24 before Moore threw a 79-yard touchdown pass to give Boise State a 31-24 lead. Colin Kaepernick
tied the game at 31 with a touchdown pass, and two short-range field goal misses by kicker Kyle Brotzman
(one in the fourth quarter and one in overtime) resulted in the upset. Moore has had an outstanding season with 30 touchdowns and five interceptions and over 3,200 yards passing.
348 yards, two touchdowns passing (64.5 percent completed, 11.2 YPA) @ No. 19 Nevada
vs. Utah State
Cameron Newton, QB, Auburn (Ranked No. 1)
Trailing 24-0 on the road against the 11th-ranked Crimson Tide, Auburn’s national title hopes and Newton’s Heisman Trophy chances both looked to be in serious jeopardy. However, Newton did what no other quarterback had done this year in beating Alabama after trailing 24-0. Newton was pretty much shut down on the ground, but used his arm to generate three scores, including the game-winner to Phillip Lutzenkirchen to give Auburn the 28-27 win. Newton completed a regular season in which he has scored an astounding 43 total touchdowns. (24 passing, 18 rushing, and one receiving.)
216 yards, three touchdowns passing (65.0 percent completed, 10.8 YPA), 39 yards, one touchdown rushing (1.8 YPC) @ No. 11 Alabama
vs. No. 19 South Carolina
Stock: Sky High
Today’s Verdict: Cameron Newton
Friday’s comeback victory over Alabama was one for the ages, and could not have been scripted better for Cam Newton’s Heisman story. With that being said, the SEC title game against South Carolina remains his last potential pothole. Newton would likely need to lose the game with a really bad performance for LaMichael James to close the gap. Considering that we’ve yet to see a bad performance from Newton this year, the most likely scenario is Newton leading either a rout, or another comeback against the Gamecocks. Look for an Auburn victory and a Heisman trophy for Cam.
THE BIG BOARD
1. Cameron Newton, QB, Auburn (Last week: 1)
2. LaMichael James, RB, Oregon (Last week: 2)
3. Andy Dalton, QB, TCU (Last week: 4)
4. Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State (Last week: 3)
5. Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford (Last week: 5)
6. Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State (Last week: 6)