SEC Heisman watch

November, 30, 2010
11/30/10
10:36
AM ET
The Heisman Trophy ballots have to be turned in next week. Here's the way I would rank the contenders in the SEC:

1. Auburn quarterback Cam Newton: Barring something completely unforeseen this weekend, Newton is your Heisman Trophy winner. He's been the best player in the country all season, the most valuable player and the most consistent. In his past two games, with everything swirling about his eligibility, he's accounted for eight touchdowns. He leads the SEC with 1,336 rushing yards and is closing in on becoming just the second player in NCAA history to rush for 20 touchdowns and pass for 20 touchdowns in the same season. Newton has passed for 24 touchdowns and run for 18.

2. Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett: He's worked his way back to the No. 2 spot with some of his best performances of the season when the Hogs needed them most. They've won six straight games, and Mallett is a big reason why. He leads the SEC with 3,592 passing yards and 3o touchdown passes, while completing 66.5 percent of his passes. He's only the fourth player in SEC history to pass for 3,000 yards and throw 30 touchdown passes in back-to-back seasons. The other three were Kentucky's Tim Couch, Kentucky's Andre Woodson and Florida's Danny Wuerffel.

3. South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore: He didn't have a huge game against Clemson last week, but he's had a huge season. Lattimore leads the SEC with 19 touchdowns and also leads all SEC running backs, averaging 101.3 rushing yards per game. Only a freshman, he's been one of the chief differences for the Gamecocks this season in their ability to finish games and has been a warrior when it comes to carrying the ball. His 232 rushing attempts are more than any other player in the league.

4. Kentucky receiver Randall Cobb: For the first time all season, Cobb didn't find the end zone last Saturday in a disappointing 24-14 loss to Tennessee. But there's no getting around what a brilliant season it's been for the versatile junior. He leads the SEC with 2,192 all-purpose yards and can break Darren McFadden's SEC record (2,310 yards) in the bowl game. Cobb also leads the SEC with 79 catches and has accounted for 16 touchdowns four different ways this season.

Chris Low | email

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