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2021 HEISMAN TROPHY PREVIEW

March 4, 2021
Heisman Odds 2021

Alabama’s DeVonta Smith became the first wide receiver to win the Heisman Trophy in over two decades when he won the award last year. Over the past 10 seasons, Smith and Alabama RB Derrick Henry are the only non-quarterbacks to win the award.

Heading into the 2021 season, it’s business as usual as the list of contenders is again headed by quarterbacks. In fact, a non-quarterback doesn’t enter the list of favorites until No. 9. Eight quarterbacks are given the best odds to win college football’s most prestigious award in 2021. Here’s a look at the field.

Rattler Is The Favorite

Oklahoma QB Spencer Rattler (pictured) looked very much like the freshman that he was early in the 2020 season. The Sooners started the season 1-2 largely because of Rattler’s inexperience. Over the final eight games of the season however, Rattler proved he is a big-time college football quarterback.

Rattler completed 67 percent of his passes in the season’s final four games and threw for nine touchdowns and just one interception. He led Oklahoma to a fifth straight Big 12 championship and guided the Sooners to a 55-20 victory over No. 7 Florida in the Cotton Bowl.

With a year of experience under his belt, Rattler will only get better in head coach Lincoln Riley’s Air Raid offense. Rattler is the +300 favorite to capture the 2021 Heisman Trophy. He will get started on his march toward the Heisman when the Sooners kick of the season on Sept. 4 at Tulane.

Another Clemson QB

When Trevor Lawrence had to miss Clemson’s regular season games against Boston College and Notre Dame due to the coronavirus, backup D.J. Uiagalelei filled in admirably. He gave Tigers’ fans a taste of what is to come in 2021. The 6-4, 250-pound sophomore went 30-of-41 for 342 yards and two touchdowns in a win over Boston College. He followed that up with 439 yards and two touchdowns against the Fighting Irish, but the Tigers lost in double overtime 47-40.

Uiagalelei is big, strong with a huge arm and the ability to change games. He will have massive shoes to fill with Lawrence off to the NFL, but he should be the next great Clemson quarterback. He is given +500 odds to win this year’s Heisman Trophy.

Georgia Peach

He started his career at USC and ended up at Georgia last year. J.T. Daniels took over the Bulldogs starting job last season and wound up completing 67.2 percent of his passes for 1,231 yards and 10 touchdowns. More importantly, Daniels led the Bulldogs to an 8-2 record and a season-ending Peach Bowl victory over Cincinnati.

The Bulldogs return a bunch of talent from last year’s team including RB Zamir White who rushed for 779 yards and 11 touchdowns. A strong running game will only help Daniels in his quest of the Heisman. He is listed at +600 odds.

Howell Is For Real

North Carolina QB Sam Howell excels in the Tar Heels Air Raid offense. Last year, he threw for 3,586 yards, 30 touchdowns, and just seven interceptions. And, Howell did all that while the Tar Heels averaged 235.8 yards rushing per game.

If the Tar Heels improve upon their 8-4 record from last year, Howell will be right there in the forefront of the Heisman talk. He is currently listed at +700 at online sportsbooks.

New Alabama QB

With Mac Jones on to the NFL, Alabama will break in a new quarterback. That would be sophomore Bryce Young, the No. 1 recruit in the class of 2020. Young played sparingly last year seeing mop-up duty in five games. He completed both of his passes against Kentucky. One went 35 yards for a touchdown in a 63-3 win.

This year will be completely different for Young. He will be the guy and will lead an Alabama offense that will likely take some time to gel. Head coach Nick Saban had to replace almost the entire offensive coaching staff when Steve Sarkisian left for Texas. Along with Jones, Smith and RB Najee Harris are also gone. That leaves Young at +700 to win this year’s Heisman.

The Rest of the Field

USC’s Kedon Slovis, who took the job away from Daniels, is listed at +1200. Another California product, Jayden Daniels, is making a name for himself at Arizona State. Daniels is given +1800 odds to win this year’s Heisman.

The first non-quarterback listed is Texas RB Bijan Robinson. As a freshman last year, Robinson ran for 703 yards averaging 8.2 per carry. He is listed at +2200 ahead of Iowa State RB Breece Hall (+4000) who led the nation with 1,572 yards and 21 touchdowns.

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