The Heisman trophy is one of the most coveted trophies in all sports. Every year, players across the nation try to boost their stats with the hope that they can win the award. Only one player every year gets to win the gold trophy with the guy posing in a stiff-arm position, and winning the award means you’re in a special fraternity of college football greats. Heisman odds are out for the upcoming college football season.
Usually, the award goes to a quarterback or running back because only one defensive player, one tight end, and a handful of receivers have won the award in the 85 years of the award. Charles Woodson is the only defensive player to win, Larry Kelly is the only tight end to win, and only four receivers, Devonta Smith, Johnny Rodgers, Tim Brown, and Desmond Howard, have been blessed to win.
Other than that, it’s been a quarterback or running back award with more of an emphasis on the quarterback winning. Now, winning the Heisman doesn’t mean that you’re going to be a good pro. But it does mean that you were the best player in the nation and that’s something very special.
This year, college football is chock-full of good players looking to add their name to the special air of college football lore. He’s a look at some of the favorites, dark horses, and value picks to keep your eye on this season.
Heisman Odds Favorites
Bryce Young ()
The sophomore Alabama quarterback has been excellent in his first year as the starter and has helped his team secure a strong position to make the playoff. Alabama narrowly escaped with a win over its rival in Auburn, and now it’s preparing for a huge game against Georgia for the SEC Championship. Both Mac Jones and Tua Tagovailoa have been elite Heisman candidates for Alabama in recent years, but Young is on pace to put up better numbers than either of them. Despite losing Mac Jones, Devonta Smith, Najee Harris, and Jaylen Waddle, the offense is still solid thanks to dynamic play from Young. Alabama may not even need to beat Georgia in the SEC Championship to make the playoff at this point, but an SEC Championship win would see Young put his stamp on a Heisman trophy.
C.J. Stroud ()
QB, Ohio State
C.J. Stroud’s Heisman odds quickly declined after Ohio State lost to Michigan for the first time in seven years in a result that effectively ended their season. As we head into conference championship weekend, Ohio State has virtually no chance of making the playoff and will stay home from the Big Ten Championship game for the first time since 2016. Nobody has truly pulled away from the field in the Heisman race, so Stroud still has a chance with his excellent production this season. However, it’s hard to imagine him finishing with better numbers than Young, and it’s hard to imagine the committee picking a player outside of the College Football Playoff.
Aidan Hutchinson ()
It seemed utterly inconceivable until about last week, but this year’s Heisman could be won by a defensive player. Aidan Hutchinson would become just the second defensive player to ever win the award after former Michigan legend and Pro Football Hall of Famer Charles Woodson. As we head into conference championship weekend, Hutchinson has a monstrous 12 sacks and 14.5 tackles for loss. In Michigan’s win over Ohio State, Hutchinson finished with three sacks and three tackles for a loss as the best player on either side of the field. At the very least, Hutchinson deserves a seat at the table, and he very well could be on his way to being the #1 pick in the NFL.
Heisman Odds Darkhorse & Value Picks
Kenny Pickett ()
The media picked Pitt to finish fourth in the ACC Coastal prior to the season, but we’re now getting ready for them to play in the ACC Championship game against Wake Forest on Saturday. Pickett has been the driving force behind Pitt’s best season since 2009 when Dion Lewis finished with just under 2,000 yards from scrimmage and 18 touchdowns as a freshman. So far, Pickett has 40 passing touchdowns, and a couple of dominant performances in the ACC Championship and a high-profile bowl game could see Pickett land a podium finish in the Heisman race.
Hassan Haskins ()
I promise this isn’t just my Michigan bias talking, but it’s at least worth mentioning Haskins’s name in the Heisman race. He just came up with one of the most dominant performances by a Wolverine in recent memory in the team’s most significant win in quite some time. He ran for 169 yards and five touchdowns against Ohio State, bringing him to 12,32 rushing yards and 18 touchdowns for the year. There are running backs with better stats, but you can argue there aren’t any who have meant more to their team. A matchup with a stout Iowa defense isn’t ideal for him to continue racking up stats, but he has the juice to make things interesting in the Heisman race.