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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

December 10, 2011 at 10:45 AM

Heisman revealed today — Griffin a likely winner

An even that could put just that much more attention on UW’s Alamo Bowl date with Baylor takes place later today — the revealing of the winner of the Heisman Trophy.

The announcement comes right around 6 p.m., a little while after UW is likely to be off the field following its practice today.

We asked UW coach Steve Sarkisian yesterday if he was rooting for Baylor QB Robert Griffin III — the presumptive favorite — to win the award.

“I don’t know,” he said. “He’s a dang good player. Robert is a tremendous player. His ability to throw, his ability to run, the way he navigates their up-tempo offense. And then what he represents for college football; he’s a good young man. Either way, if he gets that big trophy or not, we’re going to have our hands full come Dec. 29.”

As noted here earlier, UW has faced just-named Heisman winner in a bowl game only once, in the 1992 Rose Bowl against Michigan and Desmond Howard. That turned out all right for UW, though it barely needs stated the difference in the situations now.

If Griffin wins, he’ll have done it without a first-place vote from yours truly, who was privileged to again be able to have a vote.

I case my first-place vote for Stanford’s Andrew Luck. And if I had to state why, I would say that I think no other player had a bigger impact in making his team a true national title-type contender than did Luck. Throw out all of his individual stats — which are more than good enough (and I’ve frankly been surprised at how those are sometimes used against by those who maybe aren’t aware enough of how Stanford plays and Luck’s role in the whole game).

Here’s the best number to make a case for Luck — 23-2.

That’s Stanford’s record the last two years with Luck as a starter. And maybe I’m more amazed by that then some are, having followed/covered the Pac-10/12 for more than 30 years. Obviously, Jim Harbaugh had a lot to do with it, as well, as has some really good linemen (but no Heisman winner does it without a little help).

But Luck has been the on-field orchestrator of it all, handed more responsibility than most quarterbacks to change/call plays and otherwise run the Stanford offense. He didn’t play great against Oregon, but none of the Heisman candidates this year was perfect (and if you watched that game, Luck didn’t get much help and in my view is taking more of a hit for that game than is deserved.) He had his “Heisman moments” with the win at USC, a victory that simply looked better and better as the season wore on and the Trojans emerged as a true Top 10 team.

Heisman voters are asked to pick a 1-2-3, so for my second choice I went with Griffin and I placed LSU’s Tyrann Mathieu third.

Griffin has the best pure numbers of any of the Heisman contenders and deserves huge credit for Baylor’s turnaround and will be a more than worthy winner if he gets it, which I think he will.

Mathieu, meanwhile, seemed to just make big play after big play every time LSU — the only undefeated team in the country — needed it. It’s hard to imagine a defender/special teams player making a bigger impact.

Here’s a good breakdown from ESPN.com of a case that can be made for each of the Heisman finalists.

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