Baker Mayfield, Lamar Jackson and Bryce Love will all be in attendance on Saturday night for the Heisman Trophy ceremony, but Mayfield will make the lone walk onstage to accept college football’s most prestigious award.
The quarterback from the University of Oklahoma should run away with the award after another sensational season. He looked like a human joystick on the field, throwing for 4,340 passing yards, 41 touchdowns and only five interceptions. He led all other quarterbacks in completion percentage (71) and passer efficiency (203.8).
Go ahead and write his name on it. The Heisman Trophy is a lock.
Jackson’s name is once again worth mentioning in the conversation, but it’s unlikely he’ll be given the award in back-to-back seasons. He also doesn’t have the mystique from a 9-3 season with a signature win over a No. 2-ranked Florida State as he did last year. Otherwise, he was electrifying on offense again this season with 3,489 passing yards for 25 touchdowns and six interceptions, while also notching 1,443 rushing yards and 17 more touchdowns.
If anyone had a chance to upset Mayfield in the Heisman race, it would probably be Love, the All-America running back out of Stanford. He racked up 1,973 yards and 17 touchdowns on the ground in a year when he clearly wasn’t healthy the whole way through. It was a remarkable run for a player who followed closely in the footsteps of Christian McCaffrey.
As for Mayfield, he won’t be winning any awards for sportsman of the year, but when measured by pure analytics, he was the best player on the field in 2017.
“Watching the event in my living room and always having the family there and seeing who would win,” Mayfield said on Monday morning, per AP writer Cliff Brunt. “At an early age, it was always trying to root for the Sooners. When Jason White won, it was awesome running around my living room like I won it. I’ve always had fun watching the Heisman ceremony.”
Mayfield will have a front-row seat to a childhood dream on Saturday. This time, he’ll be the one accepting the award and cementing his place in history with the rest of college football’s greats.