2012 College Football Rankings: Week 7 Heisman Update

Hunting the Heisman: Race Getting a Little Closer

10/15/12 in NCAAF   |   Tyler_Waddell   |   426 respect

The Heisman race got a little closer last weekend as Geno Smith and the West Virginia offense scored just 14 points in a blowout loss to Texas Tech.

Smith, who had a substantial lead over the rest of the pack, fell down to earth as he completed just 52.7 percent of his passes and a lone touchdown.

Nevertheless, he still has a wide margin over everybody else on the list as his numbers remain incomparable.
Blog Photo - 2012 College Football Rankings: Week 7 Heisman Update

1. Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

Passing: 195-of-259 (75.3 percent), 2,271 yards, 25 TDs, 0 INTs

Rushing: 29 carries, 70 yards (2.4 ypc), TD

Why: THIS JUST IN: Geno Smith is human. Despite his average performance in Lubbock, Smith is still the overwhelming favorite to win the Heisman Trophy. He still leads the NCAA in passer efficiency (180.8 rating), completion percentage, touchdowns, is second in yards and has yet to throw an interception. Still, he cannot afford another outing like this one or those who are winning (Braxton Miller, Collin Klein) might creep up and dethrone him.

2. Braxton Miller, QB, Ohio State

Passing: 96-of-159 (60.4 percent), 1,271 yards, 11 TDs, 4 INTs

Rushing: 129 carries, 912 yards (7.1 ypc), 9 TDs

Why: Ohio State has scored 50-plus points in back-to-back games for the first time since 1996 and is now 272-0-1 all-time when scoring at least 35. Both of these statistics were attainable thanks to monstrous performances behind Braxton Miller and running back Carlos Hyde. Miller, arguably the most dynamic quarterback in the nation, will continue to be forced to put up big numbers as the Buckeye defense fails to stop the opponent.

3. Collin Klein, QB, Kansas State

79-of-118 (66.9 percent), 1,074 yards, 7 TDs, 2 INTs

Rushing: 98 carries, 510 yards (5.2 ypc), 10 TDs

Why: Klein didn't throw a touchdown pass in a 27-21 win at Iowa State, but he did run the ball 25 times for 105 yards and three scores. He's a different cup of tea at the position but is definitely worthy of contention.

4. Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

128-of-190 (67.4 percent), 1,680 yards, 14 TDs, 3 INTs

Rushing: 91 carries, 676 yards (7.4 ypc), 10 TDs

Why: A 576-yard, six-touchdown performance over Louisiana Tech has lifted true freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel into the Heisman conversation. His numbers speak for themselves; he leads the SEC in rushing and is second in passer efficiency (162.8) behind A.J. McCarron (171.9). Manziel's candidacy will be tested in the upcoming weeks as the Aggies take on LSU, Mississippi and Alabama. If he can continue to put up huge numbers against top tier defenses, we could be looking at the first freshman to have a seat in New York since Adrian Peterson in 2004.

5. Manti Te'o, LB, Notre Dame

59 (26 solo)

Interceptions: 3 (28 yards)

Why: If there's anyone that deserves some spotlight and respect, it's Manti Te'o of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. He's the anchor of a defense that ranks second nationally in points allowed (8.7 per game) and is the team's leading tackler — 22 more than the next guy (Zeke Motta). Not only is he working his way into the Heisman race, but he's solidifying himself as a first-round selection in next year's NFL draft.

Others to watch (in order):

6. A.J. McCarron, QB, Alabama

7. Stedman Bailey, WR, West Virginia

8. E.J. Manuel, QB, Florida State

9. De'Anthony Thomas, RB, Oregon

10. Taylor Kelly, QB, Arizona State

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