Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Big 12 Heisman Watch: Week 12
By David Ubben
Before we kick off this week's Heisman Watch, a quick quote from last week's Heisman Watch.
With a pretty bigtime performance and an undefeated team, Weeden is looking more and more like a legit candidate to challenge Andrew Luck. A loss by Stanford to Oregon on Saturday might shake up this whole race, and don't be surprised to see Weeden at the top of the list this time next week.
Ta-DAH! Luck's Cardinal went down. So did Kellen Moore's Boise State team. Suddenly, Weeden has surged as a legitimate threat to win the whole shebangabang.
Weeden took over the lead in total first-place votes in our ESPN Heisman Watch, but is only in third place overall. How? Four of our 15 voters didn't have Weeden on their ballot at all. This is the part where I sigh dismissively. As expected, this one will likely come down to Bedlam. Win with a big performance, and the award may be Weeden's.
Here's how the Big 12's candidates sit, with a new addition at No. 3.
1. Brandon Weeden, QB, Oklahoma State
Last week: 31-37, 423 yards, 5 TD in a 66-6 win over Texas Tech.
Making the case for Weeden: Weeden was the catalyst in the worst loss in Texas Tech history. Despite windy conditions, he was his usual self, putting up staggering numbers and sitting for the fourth quarter. Later in the day, as mentioned above, Weeden slid up near or at the top of the national Heisman scene.
2. Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma
Last week: Off.
Making the case for Jones: Jones is still hanging around the second tier of national contenders for the award, but he'll have a couple showcase games down the stretch, taking on a ranked Baylor team in primetime this week before closing the season against OSU on Dec. 3.
3. Collin Klein, QB, Kansas State
Last week: 17-27, 281 yards, TD, INT. 35 carries, 103 yards, 5 TD in a 53-50 win over Texas A&M in 4 OT.
Making the case for Klein: Klein makes his season debut on this least after a week in which he accounted for six touchdowns. He's now the nation's leader with 24 touchdowns and needs three more to break Longhorns legend Ricky Williams' all-time Big 12 record. His opponent this week: Texas.
4. Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
Last week: 22-29, 312 yards, 3 TD, INT. 10 carries, 103 yards, TD.
Making the case for Griffin: The Baylor 21-point fourth-quarter comeback was sparked by Griffin's 49-yard touchdown run, and he added two more long touchdown passes to force overtime, where the Bears got a defensive stop for the win. Griffin needs a win over Oklahoma this week to get back into the serious conversation.
Here's how I voted in ESPN's weekly Heisman Watch:
1. Brandon Weeden
2. Andrew Luck
3. Trent Richardson
4. LaMichael James
5. Case Keenum
Note: Collin Klein and Landry Jones are both right outside my top five.