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Top 5 Contenders for the 2022 Heisman Trophy

Top 5 Contenders for the 2022 Heisman Trophy

The most prestigious award in college football is the Heisman Trophy, which has come with some surprising results in recent years. Here are the top 5 contenders for the 2022 Heisman Trophy.

Note: Odds found here.

5. TreVeyon Henderson, RB, Ohio State Buckeyes (+2000)

Henderson is entering his sophomore season as a Buckeye after a very impressive 2021 campaign. He rushed for 1,248 yards and 15 touchdowns as a freshman. To add to his rushing production, Henderson caught 27 passes for 312 yards and four touchdowns. His play helped the Buckeyes win the Rose Bowl following the 2021 season.

After his solid freshman campaign, Henderson is poised to take on more of the workload as a sophomore. He will have to share the spotlight with his quarterback, who is the favorite to win the award, and with many talented receivers on his offense. Henderson will have his chance to shine though, as the Buckeyes play Notre Dame, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State and Wisconsin this season. With a good season in 2022, he could win the Heisman or set himself up well for a Heisman campaign in 2023.

4. Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas Longhorns (+1600)

Robinson is the top draft-eligible running back in college football as a junior. He rushed for 703 yards and four touchdowns as a freshman. His role increased as a sophomore, as he totaled 1,127 rushing yards, 295 receiving yards and 15 total touchdowns. Texas went just 5-7 in 2021, but it wasn’t due to a lack of good running back play.

Texas’s offense will have several playmakers that Robinson will have to compete with. Quinn Ewers is a superstar recruit coming in as a transfer quarterback, while Xavier Worthy is a very good college receiver. The Longhorns have plenty of games where Robinson can get a “Heisman moment”. They play Alabama, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Baylor, which should put them on the national stage. Robinson can be the most electrifying player in college football and has the potential to be the first running back to win the award since Derrick Henry in 2016.

3. Caleb Williams, QB, USC Trojans (+800)

Williams followed his coach at Oklahoma, Lincoln Riley, to USC. He didn’t begin the season as a starter for the Sooners, but did eventually take over for Spencer Rattler. He passed for 1,912 yards, 21 touchdowns and four interceptions on 64.5 percent completion. His ability as a runner helped him reach 442 rushing yards and six touchdowns. Oklahoma had a down year, but was still able to make the Alamo Bowl.

At USC, Williams joins a team full of transfers. He will have weapons like former Oregon running back Travis Dye and former Pittsburgh wide receiver Jordan Addison, who should help him achieve his goals. The Trojans will have a few big games on the schedule including Notre Dame and Utah. The Trojans will have to put up some big offensive numbers and maybe win the Pac-12 for Williams to win the award.

2. Bryce Young, QB, Alabama Crimson Tide (+350)

Young is the returning Heisman winner. In his first year as a starter, Young passed for 4,872 yards, 47 touchdowns and seven interceptions on 66.9 percent completion. He led the Crimson Tide to the College Football Playoff and it looks like the Crimson Tide are in a solid place to replicate that success.

Unlike some of the other players on this list, if an Alabama offensive player wins the Heisman, it is going to be Young. His biggest competitor for the award internally is edge rusher Will Anderson, but defensive players don’t have a good track record winning the award. In the SEC West, Young will be going up against Texas A&M and Arkansas, which are games that Young can use to bolster his Heisman status.

1. C.J. Stroud, QB, Ohio State Buckeyes (+200)

After starting the season off with a few hiccups, Stroud ended up developing nicely into a great quarterback. He passed for 4,435 yards, 44 touchdowns and six interceptions on 71.9 percent completion. His play resulted in him finishing fourth for the Heisman Trophy and the Buckeyes winning the Rose Bowl. They will have their sights on more in 2022.

Stroud will have to battle with Henderson for some of the Heisman votes. Both are capable players, but Stroud would likely get the nod if both play well, as quarterbacks are favored more often with the Heisman. Like Henderson, there are plenty of big games for Stroud to get his big moments. Not only can Stroud play well this season, but he could also be on track to be the no. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

 

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