Coming out of this past weekend in college football no player appears to be getting a late-season Heisman Trophy push the way Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield is. A win on the road against Baylor has catapulted Mayfield into the national spotlight as a legitimate Heisman contender late in the season, but Washington State head coach Mike Leach thinks there should be some consideration given to his quarterback in Pullman, Luke Falk.
Leach said his quarterback absolutely belongs in the Heisman mix, but concedes the Heisman Trophy is a bit of a political process that likely goes against Washington State’s candidate. Leach would know this from experience.
“Now (the Heisman) is just the bi-product of trying to speculate who’s the best player of the national championship team. … But failure to do that, then I think you ought to go back to the original definition which is who’s made the greatest contribution to his individual team,” said Leach. “If that’s the case then virtually everyone needs to vote for Luke Falk. And anybody that doesn’t needs to re-examine why their voting for the Heisman to begin with.”
Falk leads the nation in passing yards per game (406.7 ypg) and passing yards (4,067 yards). He is also among the nation’s leaders with 35 touchdown passes with just eight interceptions. It should be noted how often Washington State passes compared to other teams around the country. Falk has attempted at least 45 passes in all but one game this season, and in that one game he threw 41 passes. The high number of pass attempts tends to lead to big yardage and touchdown numbers, but Falk is also completing 70.3 percent of his passes, which is remarkable. Only four passers in the nation have at least 70 percent of their passes completed (coincidently, Mayfield is one of them; Clemson’s Deshaun Watson and Western Kentucky’s Brandon Doughty are the others).
Leach has never coached a Heisman Trophy winner, but he has had a number of players receive Heisman votes including current Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury and former Red Raider receiver Michael Crabtree. Another former Texas Tech quarterback under Leach, Graham Harrell, finished fourth in the 2008 Heisman Trophy voting, tying the highest Heisman finish for a player from the school (Donny Anderson, 1965).
Helmet sticker to Coug Center.