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Baylor’s Bryce Petty remains on pace for special season

Bryce Petty AP

The talk last week by some college football observers was that Johnny Manziel was having such a magnificent season, he just might win a second Heisman.

They compared Manziel’s statistics with other Heisman candidates and concluded that, based on the numbers at least, Johnny Football was a shoo-in for the trophy.

But they seemed to have forgotten about Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty who, upon closer examination, might be having an even better season than Manziel.


— Petty’s 206.23 passer rating not only leads the nation, it would break the NCAA record of 191.78 set by Wisconsin’s Russell Wilson in 2011. Manziel’s rating is also stellar at 186.86.

— Petty throws for 332.4 yards per game, which is a about a yard better than Manziel’s 331.3 average. ┬áBut the rub is that Petty is getting his yardage while attempting almost six fewer passes per game. Petty averages 25.9 passer per game while Manziel is at 31.5 per game. Overall, Manziel has thrown 82 more passes than Petty and has just 321 more yards on the year to show for it (he’s played 10 games, Petty has played nine).

— Manziel has 39 total touchdowns in 10 games, while Petty has 34 total touchdowns in nine games. So while Manziel averages 3.9 touchdowns per game, Petty averages 3.8. But, again, Manziel has run 139 more plays than Petty has this year. So Petty produces a touchdown every 8.4 plays that he’s involved in, while Manziel produces one every 10.8 plays. This is where Baylor’s numerous blowouts come into play, as Petty has missed a lot of second-half action as a result.

— Petty has 10 rushing touchdowns in nine games while Manziel has eight in 10 games.

— Petty has just one interception on the year while Manziel has 11.

— Manziel is superior in completion percentage (73 percent to 65.2 percent), total rushing yards (611 to 127) and touchdown passes (31 to 24).

Petty is on pace to have 3,989 passing yards, 32 touchdown passes, 168 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns by the time the Heisman vote is due, while Manziel is on pace for 3,975 yards, 37 touchdown passes, 732 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns.

So the two players are pretty much equal when it comes to projected passing yardage, while Manziel will likely have way more rushing yards. But when it comes to total touchdowns, Manziel’s pace is for 47 while Petty’s pace is 45.

But when you consider Petty’s passing efficiency number and his amazing lack of turnovers, plus the fact that he’s almost on par with Manziel despite being involved in far fewer plays, there’s a good argument to be made that, while both players are having amazing seasons, Petty’s is the most impressive overall.

Whatever the case, both of these special players should be in New York City come mid-December.

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3 Responses to “Baylor’s Bryce Petty remains on pace for special season”
  1. randywith8as says: Nov 18, 2013 4:24 AM

    Mariota is statistically superior to both of them and is not considered for the Heisman despite playing a tougher schedule than both all because he lost to Stanford while playing on a bum knee.

  2. longborer69 says: Nov 18, 2013 5:18 AM

    Mariota is not statistically superior to Petty. Petty has higher yards per play than Mariota. He has higher yards per game despite playing less in the fourth quarter.

    Mariota has 0 INT, Petty has 1, not a significant difference. Mariota has 3 fumbles lost, Petty has 1 or 2. Arguably, a fumble in the backfield is more damaging than a downfield interception.

    Mariota has 25 passing TDs, 9 rushing in 10 games. Petty has 24 and 10 in 9 games.

    Their stats were quite comparable until Mariota got hurt. Petty’s are now better. The Heisman is not given for being better while healthy, it is given for having a better season.

    The one thing Mariota has going for him in is a much tougher schedule. Baylor has only played three decent to good teams, no elite ones, and six bad, bad teams. Sagarin rates Oregon’s schedule so far the 35th toughest in the nation. Baylor’s is 85th.

    Oregon has played three teams in the Football Outsiders top 25 for S&P+ defensively. Baylor has none (but two coming up). Both have played three teams in the 26-50 ranking. Most of Oregon’s opponents play defense. Most of Baylor’s don’t.

    But voters only care about that so much. If Petty’s team stays undefeated and he keeps putting up massive numbers without mistakes, he probably is going to be ahead of Mariota. He might even deserve to be ahead of Winston.

    I’m an Oregon fan, not a Baylor fan. But I can see what Petty is doing.

  3. spacemaker101 says: Nov 18, 2013 7:05 AM

    Ill take Mike Davis over anyone

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