The SEC is going to be difficult to separate the Heisman contenders from the pretenders until they play each other. It’s easy to make a strong case for several players at this point, like so…..
Best player, best team. Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa is arguably having the most efficient use of playing time of anybody in the country. With less than 20 passes in each game, Tua is completing 71% of his passes for 455 yards, six TD’s, no picks, with 13 yards per attempt and an SEC leading 237.2 QB rating. He has also ran in a score and has made countless highlights with his feet extending plays. Easy to see why Vegas made Tua a preseason Heisman favorite.
Ole Miss’s Jordan Ta’amu has been nothing short of sensational to begin the 2018 campaign. Ta’amu is first in P-5 conferences with 784 passing yards and has a strong chance of finishing as the SEC leader in passing yards with the type of vertical weapons at his disposal. (Check below for Rebels’ highlights)
Auburn holds the most impressive win in the SEC so far after beating (then) #6 ranked Washington. QB Jarrett Stidham is one of the more talented QB’s in the country and although his numbers aren’t flashy now, 386 passing yards and just two TD’s, it’s not how you start it’s how you finish and I don’t believe we have seen Stidham’s best football of 2018. Combine that with Auburn being competitive all year in the SEC, Stidham’s Heisman stock will only rise.
Another QB tearing it up statistically per usual is Missouri’s Drew Lock. On the season Lock has 687 passing yards and nine total TD’s for the undefeated Tigers (Missouri). It’s no surprise that Lock can put up the numbers to be a Heisman finalist. In 2017, Lock threw for over 3,900 yards and 44 TD’s. Missouri however, went an unimpressive 7-6 on the season. In order for Lock to get invited to NYC his team has to do a lot better than 2017 results. So far 2-0.
It’s only September, but what should go down as one of if not the most-impressive-performances-in-a-loss award, Texas A&M’s Kellen Mond threw for 430 yards and three TD’s against one of the country’s best defenses, the Clemson Tigers. It’ll be interesting to see if that play can continue going forward.
Ole Miss’s running back Scottie Phillips has 311 yards rushing on 30 carries. If you do that math, Phillips is averaging a first down every time he touches the ball. Give that man the ball.
How wild would it be if a Kentucky football player won the most coveted individual award in team sports? Pretty wild, but RB Benny Snell Jr. has 300 yards rushing and the Wildcats are 2-0. The SEC is by no means an underdog conference but if you need an underdog story to root for, here’s one.