If you have been staying up late on the weekends to watch some Pac-12 football, then you are well aware of the impact running back Bryce Love is having for the Cardinal. You also have been watching him skyrocket up the Heisman board the past few weeks. Now, according to Bovada’s latest Heisman odds, Love has pulled even on the board with Penn State’s Saquon Barkley.
Barkley and Love each have 7/5 odds to win the Heisman Trophy, with Love seemingly gaining the momentum in the race according to Bovada the past few weeks. Love continues to pile up the rushing yards, while Barkley is accumulating all-purpose yardage in a variety of ways. Barkley was off this past week, which may have played a slight role in the Heisman odds as well, especially after two not-so-Barkley-esque performances in the stat sheet heading into the bye week. Meanwhile, Love has been dominant in Pac-12 action.
As mentioned yesterday, Ohio State quarterback JT Barrett continues to move up the Heisman ladder as the Buckeyes have surged in recent weeks since losing to Oklahoma. Barrett moved from 28/1 odds last week to 9/1 odds this week. Barrett and Barkley will be going head-to-head in two weeks in Columbus, and Barkley’s make-or-break run for the Heisman Trophy will begin this week with the start of a key three-game stretch against Michigan and back-to-back road games against Ohio State and Michigan State.
USC quarterback Sam Darnold started the season as the Heisman favorite on the board, but his odds have slipped to 40/1 after a rough showing in a win this weekend. Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson, the 2016 Heisman Trophy winner, has slipped to 18/1 odds despite Louisville losing a third game this weekend.
I’m thinking even video game freaks would dismiss this as implausible, even as it’s as real — and impressive — as it gets.
In Week 6, Khalil Tate rushed for 327 yards in a win over Colorado, setting the FBS single-game record for a quarterback. A week later, the sophomore added to this impressive October run as he ran for 230 yards in a 47-30 win over UCLA, becoming the first FBS quarterback in two decades to put together back-to-back 200-yard games.
The 557 rushing yards combined in the two games are more than all but 19 players had in the first six weeks entering this weekend. Hell, it’s more than 10 teams had coming into Saturday as well.
Perhaps the most impressive part of this historic run? Tate has accomplished this ground-game carnage on just 29 carries. For those scoring at home without a calculator or a pad and paper or the mental acumen to do it in your head, that averages out to 19.2 yards per carry.
In other words, Tate has just been flat ridiculous.
Somewhat lost in the statistical flurry is what the player has meant to his team’s bottom line.
Tate didn’t start the season as UA’s starter under center, and the Wildcats began the year a middling 2-2. The past two weeks, however, the Tate-led ‘Cats have gone 2-0 and are now behind only USC in the Pac-12 South.
And then there were 20.
Tuesday, the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award announced that its 47-player preseason watch list has been whittled down to 20. The award has been given annually since 1987 to the to the top quarterback in the country who is either a senior or fourth-year junior for his accomplishments both on and off the field.
“The Golden Arm Award considers character, citizenship, integrity, leadership, and honor – characteristics that were displayed by my father – to be every bit as important as the quarterback’s completion rate or number of touchdowns scored,” John C. Unitas, Jr., president of the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Educational Foundation and son of the quarterbacking legend in whose honor the award is named. “Despite my Dad’s outstanding accomplishments, he never forgot his humble beginnings and that won him a permanent place in the hearts of everyone who ever knew him.”
Last year’s winner was Clemson’s Deshaun Watson. Below is the complete list of the 20 players to survive the latest cut:
J.T. Barrett, Ohio State
David Blough, Purdue
Jesse Ertz, Kansas State
Luke Falk, Washington State
Riley Ferguson, Memphis
Ryan Finley, NC State
Nick Fitzgerald, Mississippi St.
Quinton Flowers, South Florida
Justice Hansen, Arkansas St.
Kenny Hill, TCU
Stephen Johnson, Kentucky
Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma
Trace McSorley, Penn St.
Josh Rosen, UCLA
Mason Rudolph, Oklahoma State
Brandon Silvers, Troy
Nick Stevens, Colorado St.
Clayton Thorson, Northwestern
Mike White, Western Ky.
Logan Woodside, Toledo
Penn State running back Saquon Barkley was held in check for much of the afternoon on Saturday by Northwestern, but that wasn’t enough to change Barkley’s Heisman odds this week. The latest Heisman Trophy odds form Bovada held firm with the 5/4 odds placed on Barkley last week, which keeps him atop the Heisman board for now.
The most notable development in the Heisman odds this week may be the rise of Stanford running back Bryce Love. Love rocketed up the board this week by going from 14/1 odds last week to 4/1 odds this week. The only two players ahead of Love right now are Barkley and Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield. After a home loss to Iowa State, Mayfield’s Heisman odds moved from 9/4 to 13/4.
Love leads the nation with 206.67 yards per game and is the only running back in the nation to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark so far. Love leads the nation with 1,240 rushing yards, which is roughly 240 yards than the next leading running back, San Diego State’s Rashaad Penny. For reference, Barkley’s rushing total stands at 649 yards, although Barkley’s all-purpose yardage adds up to 1,302 yards, which is ahead of Love’s all-purpose yardage so far.
Last year’s Heisman Trophy winner, Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson, saw his odds dip from 10/1 to 16/1 after a road loss at NC State on Thursday night.
The 2017 college football season has come to an end early for tight end Caleb Wilson, according to a report from the Los Angeles Times. Wilson went down with a foot injury on Saturday against Colorado. The injury reportedly will require surgery that will sideline him for the remainder of the season. Wilson confirmed the injury status on his Twitter account.
Wilson, one of top-rated tight ends in the nation, is UCLA’s second-leading receiver this season with 38 receptions for 490 yards with one touchdown. In Saturday’s win over Colorado, Wilson caught six passes for 65 yards. In the season-opener, Wilson exploded for 15 catches for 208 yards in UCLA’s wild comeback against Texas A&M.
Austin Roberts figures to see more of a role at tight end as a result of the Wilson injury. The junior has six catches for 77 yards and two touchdowns in five games this season.