11 weeks in and here’s how we rank them.
Brandon Weeden QB Oklahoma State
Week 11 at Texas Tech- 31/37 (83.8%) for 423 yards, 5 TD
Season Stats- 313/428 (73.1%) for 3,635 yards, 31 TD 9 INT
Weeden’s message to the Red Raiders last week: Respect your elders. With surgical precision, the 28-year-old threw for five scores and no interceptions for the second time this season. He’s heating up at precisely the right stage in the season, although his numbers the entire year have been nothing to scoff at. Currently ranked No. 2 in the BCS standings, the Cowboys are two games away from a national title appearance. If Weeden and the Cowboys win out, he’s got to be the favorite for the Heisman.
Trent Richardson RB Alabama
Week 11 at Mississippi State- 32 carries for 127 yards (4.0 ypc), 1 TD
Season Stats- Rushing: 204 carries for 1,205 yards (5.9 ypc), 18 TD Receiving: 25 catches for 318 yards, 1 TD
The Tide made it pretty clear that in order for them to be successful for the remainder of the season, their offense must run through Richardson. He followed through with last week’s game plan, gaining more than 100 yards on the ground for the seventh time this season. He also made it into the endzone after being stuffed by LSU two weeks ago. Richardson and the Tide are still a favorite to compete for the national title and that’s why his Heisman chances are still on the rise. Expect ridiculous numbers from “T-Rich” this week as Georgia Southern comes to “T-Town.”
Andrew Luck QB Stanford
Week 11 vs. Oregon- 27/41 (65.9%) for 271 yards, 3 TD 2 INT
Season Stats- Passings: 221/313 (70.6%) for 2,695 yards, 29 TD 7 INT Rushing: 34 carries for 134 yards, 2 TD
Bad Luck? Not necessarily. Oregon is a strong team, and they certainly proved as much with their emphatic 53-30 road win last week. In Luck’s defense, one of his two interceptions was a case of a Ducks’ defender being in the right place at the right time following a deflection off a Stanford receiver. However, Luck failed to succeed under the lights and his Heisman chances will take a dip because of his performance. He’s thrown four picks in the last three games and his accuracy is steadily declining. He’ll need to right the ship this week against California in order to regain the confidence of Heisman voters.
LaMichael James RB Oregon
Week 11 at Stanford- 20 carries for 146 yards (7.3 ypc), 3 TD
Season Stats- Rushing: 153 carries for 1,207 yards (7.9 ypc), 12 TD Receiving: 13 catches for 175 yards, 1 TD
After seemingly falling off the face of the Earth at the season’s start, James is right back in the Heisman conversation. He made an emphatic statement against Stanford last week, as the junior found the end zone three times against what was supposed to be one of the Pac-12’s best defenses. James missed two games because of injury but still remains one of the most productive running backs in the nation. He has led the Ducks back after a season-opening loss to top-ranked LSU, which doesn’t look bad at all now that we know how good the Tigers are. If James and the Ducks can slip into the national title, James is sure to be a frontrunner for the Heisman.
Case Keenum QB Houston
Week 11 at Tulane- 22/29 (75.9%) for 325 yards, 3 TD
Season Stats- Passing: 279/376 (74.2%) for 3, 951 yards, 37 TD 3 INT Rushing: 37 carries for 35 yards, 2 TD
It’s become somewhat of a tradition to watch Keenum roast C-USA opponents on Thursday nights. This week, the Cougars host SMU on Saturday and should continue their reign as the nation’s highest scoring offense. If Keenum is unknown in the national spectrum, his top receiver Patrick Edwards is merely a speck in the college football universe. Keenum and Edwards have hooked up for 14 touchdowns thus far, catapulting Edwards to the top of many offensive categories. A few more losses from schools currently ranked in the BCS top-five and the Cougars could find themselves in the national title hunt. It’s still a little far-fetched, but crazier things have happened.