The Heisman Trophy race enters the final week and the race remains open for top contenders.
The award will be presented on December 11, and Alabama quarterback Bryce Young will be the favorite heading into Saturday’s game against top-ranked Georgia in the SEC championship game. Young led a last-minute comeback in Alabama’s four overtime win over Auburn in the Iron Bowl on Nov. 27.
MORE: How Bryce Young, Alabama Surprised Auburn With 4OT Iron Bowl Win
There are still two other possible finalists who have a match on Saturday. Pitt’s Kenny Pickett will lead the Panthers in the ACC championship game, and Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson has a chance to make one last impression in the Big Ten championship game.
The race has remained tough throughout the season, which is normal for the course in 2021. Here’s a look at Heisman’s current odds, possible runner-up, and other items needed to find out about Heisman’s career:
Heisman’s current probabilities
Here are the current Heisman odds according to FanDuel.com.
|Bryce Young, QB, Alabama||-220|
|CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State||+450|
|Matt Corral, quarterback, Ole Miss||+2000|
|Kenny Pickett, quarterback, Pitt||+2000|
|Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Michigan||+2000|
|Kenneth Walker, RB, State of Michigan||+2000|
Heisman’s Top Candidates
Bryce Young, QB, Alabama (-220)
Statistics 2021: 3,901 yards, 40 touchdowns, four interceptions
Young is poised to be the first Alabama quarterback to win the Heisman Trophy following Heisman finalists of AJ McCarron (2013), Tua Tagovailoa (2018) and Mac Jones (2020). It would give Crimson Tide back-to-back winners after DeVonta Smith won the award as a catcher last season. Young led the game-tying 97-yard drive against Auburn in the Iron Bowl last week, a sequence that could be his Heisman moment, depending on how he fares against No. 1 Georgia in the SEC championship game. Young has 20 touchdowns and one interception with five 300-yard games since losing to Texas A&M. He remains the leader of common sense in a confusing race.
CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State (+450)
Statistics 2021: 3,862 yards, 38 touchdowns, five interceptions
Stroud is poised to be the third consecutive Ohio State quarterback to be a finalist for the Heisman Trophy. He passed more than 300 yards in eight of 11 starts and was efficient in executing an offense that averaged 45.5 points per game. Stroud’s best performance was a 434-yard, six-touchdown performance against Michigan State, but the downside would be a loss to Michigan. Stroud had 394 passing yards and two touchdowns in the loss, but he wasn’t the most dominant player on the field. Like Dwayne Haskins (2018) and Justin Fields (2019), Stroud will likely have to settle for being a finalist.
MORE: Ohio State vs. Michigan State: 5 Crazy Stats From Buckeyes’ Halftime Loss To Spartans
Matt Corral, quarterback, Ole Miss (+2000)
Statistics 2021: 3,334 passing yards, 20 touchdowns, four interceptions, 597 rushing yards, 11 touchdowns
Corral is the Lamar Jackson-type candidate in the race. He doesn’t have the benefit of a conference championship game, but he does have the stats with 597 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns to go along with his passing stats. Ole Miss will likely land a New Years Day 6 bowl in Lane Kiffin’s second season. Corral didn’t have some kind of trademark moment, and he didn’t play very well in losses to Alabama and Auburn. Still, if you’re looking for one of those Team MVP type candidates that could win by default, Corral has a shot.
Kenny Pickett, quarterback, Pitt (+2000)
Statistics 2021: 4,066 yards, 40 touchdowns, seven interceptions, 221 rushing yards, four touchdowns
Pickett is an interesting candidate from last weekend who could impress during the ACC championship game. The senior quarterback has eight games with 300 yards or more, and he led the Panthers to exciting victories against Clemson and North Carolina at home. The Panthers lost two games, and Western Michigan’s game is still a head scratch. But Pickett could get some votes by taking Pitt past Wake Forest in the conference title game. It’s a safe bet to at least be a finalist.
Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Michigan (+2000)
Statistics 2021: 51 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 12.5 sacks, eight quarterback rush, two forced fumbles
Looking for the late voting candidate? Hutchison impressed with a three-sack performance against rival Ohio State on Saturday, and that came two weeks after a three-sack performance against Penn State. Hutchinson emerged as a great player in the featured games, and he has one more chance to build on that in the Big Ten championship game against Iowa. Charles Woodson is the only primarily defensive player to win the Heisman Trophy. Could this be the year another Michigan player follows in his footsteps?
Kenneth Walker, RB, Michigan State (+2000)
Statistics 2021: 263 carries, 1,636 yards, 6.2 yards per carry, 19 total touchdowns
Walker led Michigan State to a 10-win season and provided one of the best performances of the 2021 season against Michigan on October 30. He finished with 23 carries for 197 yards and five touchdowns in a 37-33 victory. Walker, however, was not a factor with six carries for 25 yards in a 56-7 loss to Ohio State three weeks later. Walker finished second on the FBS in rushing yards, and with four finalists it will be a decent bet to get to New York, depending on which quarterbacks are likely to win the award.
MORE: Who is Kenneth Walker III? Meet the Big Ten’s newest star, RB, who is leading the revival of the state of Michigan
When is the Heisman trophy ceremony?
The Heisman will be awarded on December 11, one week after the conferences hold their conference championship games. Last year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ceremony was held virtually, and not until January 5. This year, the ceremony returns to its normal date in mid-December.
Will this be the closest Heisman race?
Without a clear leader, this year’s race could look like 2009. That’s when Alabama running back Mark Ingram (1,304 points) edged out Stanford’s Toby Gerhart (1,276) by 28 votes to win the award, despite losing the Doak Walker award (best runner) to Cardinal Rusher.
Colt McCoy of Texas (1,145) finished third and Ndamukong Suh of Nebraska (815) finished fourth. This race may not be that close, but it could look like the same field if two quarterbacks, Walker and Hutchinson, end up as finalists.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.