Winston wins Heisman with ease

Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston won the Heisman Trophy by one of the widest margins in the history of the award.

Winston won with 668 first-place votes and 2,205 total points, easily outdistancing AJ McCarron of Alabama.

Saturday marked the 12th time in the past 13 seasons that a quarterback won the award -- a run started by another Seminoles quarterback, Chris Weinke, in 2000.

The history

At age 19, Winston became the youngest Heisman winner, two weeks younger than fellow 19-year-old Mark Ingram of Alabama, who won in 2009. The three youngest winners (Winston, Ingram and Johnny Manziel) have won the award within the past five years. Winston also joined Manziel as the only freshmen to win the award.

Youngest Players to Win Heisman

Winston finished with more than three times as many points as McCarron (704). It was the fifth-largest margin of victory in the past 50 years.

Winston joined Charlie Ward (1993) and Weinke as Heisman winners to play at Florida State. This makes Florida State the third school to have at least three Heisman-winning quarterbacks, along with Notre Dame (4) and Florida (3).

Winston broke Weinke’s school record with 38 touchdown passes. Weinke’s mark of 33 stood since the 2000 season.

Why Winston won

Winston rated as the best quarterback in the country per opponent-adjusted QBR (he has a 90.9 mark heading into the BCS title game against Auburn). He excelled in a couple of different areas.

He completed 62 percent of his passes, with eight touchdowns and 15 plays of 20 or more yards, when throwing under pressure. Those all ranked best among quarterbacks in automatic-qualifier (AQ) conferences.

His numbers were even better against five or more pass-rushers, with a 70 percent completion percentage and 20 touchdown throws.

Winston was great on third down, with a 98.9 Total QBR, matching Stanford's Andrew Luck (2010) for the best within the 10 seasons for which we have data.

Florida State averaged 8.1 yards per play with Winston under center, best among AQ quarterbacks. The Seminoles scored a touchdown on 55 percent of their drives that Winston quarterbacked. The FBS average is 27 percent.

Looking ahead

The last two Heisman winners to play in the BCS title game (Ingram and Cam Newton of Auburn) were on the winning team. Five of the six before that were on the losing end.