Welp, so much for THAT!
The race for the Heisman has come down to two candidates. And neither of them is Sam Darnold.
Lamar Jackson and Baker Mayfield saw to that immediately.
One of them didn’t even play the second half of his game. The other was Lamar Jackson.
Need an explanation? Okay, here it is.
Sam Darnold and USC played Western Michigan in Los Angeles. Lamar Jackson faced Purdue in Indianapolis. Baker Mayfield took on UTEP in Norman. Three games. Three candidates. Two different results. Yes, only TWO results.
Let’s start at the Coliseum in L.A. Sam Darnold, the odds on favorite to win the Heisman, had a – ready for this – subpar game against the Western Michigan Broncos. With the season he had last year, and especially the Rose Bowl against Penn State where he rallied the Trojans from 14 down to win the game and threw for 453 yards and 5 touchdowns, threw for merely 289 yards on Saturday.
That wouldn’t be so bad if he didn’t throw two interceptions and 0 touchdowns. Yes that’s right, 0 touchdowns. So you get a lower division opponent, in your house, with a chance to really launch your Heisman campaign, in fact with people anointing you the winner, your team wins 49-31…..and you draw a blank in throwing touchdowns?
Not good Sam.
Let’s go to Memorial Stadium in Norman, OK.
Baker Mayfield. Hardly anyone mentioned him in their way-too-early Heisman conversation. So, with him basically being one of the underdogs, didn’t do much against a lower-level opponent except toss 329 yards, 3 touchdowns, and have a ridiculous QB Rating of 282.7 and had only one incompletion during the game. Oh by the way, he didn’t play a full game. He didn’t even play a full HALF and he did all of this in staking OU to a 35-7 halftime lead. Needless to say the rout was already on and ended 56-7.
Then, there’s Lamar Jackson. See what had happened was, Lamar had three subpar games to END his season last year, but he had already sealed up his award in the first eight games. So what does he do to begin A) an encore and B) his quest to do what only Archie Griffin has done? He goes 30-46, 378 yards 2 touchdowns, 0 interceptions. And oh by the way, he added 21 carried for 107 yards.
But he did lose a fumble. But I’ll take the rest of the numbers minus the fumble any day.
Yes I know it’s only week 1, but at the same time, it doesn’t look good for the pre-season Heisman winner to struggle for the most part against an FBS team, but then it shouldn’t surprise you either at what Jackson and Mayfield put up. If I have to put up an early ruling, I can’t. Why you ask? Because while Mayfield’s numbers were absolutely spectacular, Jackson’s numbers came against a team in a fellow Power 5 conference member.
Purdue it only may be, but a member of a Power Five conference nonetheless.
Now we just have to see what they do in week two. And if any other candidates show up with a Heisman worthy performance.