With week three of college football in the books, it is time to look who has impressed and who has underwhelmed. There are some new candidates shooting up the charts in the Heisman race, but who are the favorites for the trophy and what are their odds.
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The big three (and a half?)
Three Heisman Trophy candidates have led the race since preseason and they are still there. Meanwhile, another candidate has been hovering around the top of the market for a while too.
CJ Stroud (QB, Ohio State) +250 with BetOnline
Stroud leads the nation in touchdowns thrown with 11 and his QB rating is second in the nation at 208.6. He trails only Max Duggan, who has thrown the ball just a handful of times this season. So it’s fair to say that Stroud has been impressive thus season and is rightly one of the favorites for the trophy. Stroud will be confident of improving his numbers in the next couple of weeks, and continue to be the leading Heisman candidate, when the Buckeyes host Wisconsin and Rutgers.
Caleb Williams (QB, USC) +350 with BetOnline
Williams has also produced impressive numbers this season. His 190.5 QB rating, 10.2 yards per pass attempt, eight touchdowns and 874 passing yards all rank in the top-25 in the nation in their individual categories. Williams has also ran in a couple of scores and we can look for his production on the ground to pick up as the season progresses. USC face a tricky task this Saturday when they travel to Oregon State.
Bryce Young (QB, Alabama) +550 with BetOnline
Last year’s Heisman Trophy winner, Bryce Young has probably been the least impressive of the three to open the season and that shows in his odds. The Crimson Tide have a really tough month ahead and this will likely make or break Young’s Heisman campaign. Alabama travel to number ten ranked Arkansas in two weeks before facing #23 Texas A&M at home and then traveling to number 11 Tennessee.
Young’s numbers so far have been pretty average by his standards and if they don’t improve over the next few weeks in really tough games then we could see his odds shoot out.
Stetson Bennett (QB, Georgia) +1200 with Bovada
Georgia’s leader, Stetson Bennett has hovered around the fourth favorite in the Heisman Trophy market for a couple of weeks now. His performances this year have been stellar, but oddsmakers are reluctant to lump him in with the top boys just yet.
Bennett’s eye-popping 10.8 yards per pass attempt is enough for sixth in the country with his QB rating of 183.5 enough for 11th in the nation. Georgia’s schedule is a bit easier than Alabama’s for the next month and should Bennett perform as expected against cupcake Kent State next week, he could look at being lumped in the mix real soon.
Dillon Gabriel (QB, Oklahoma) +1600 with Bovada
Oklahoma QB, Dillon Gabriel has been just on the outside looking in on the Heisman favorites for a couple of weeks. He’s not really been asked to do too much yet, but has still managed to account for nine total touchdowns.
He should have another week to add to his impressive 178.0 QB rating before things get a bit tougher against TCU and Texas. We are not buying just yet.
JJ McCarthy (QB, Michigan) +2500 with BetOnline
This week’s main emerging candidate is Michigan’s QB, JJ McCarthy. McCarthy has started two games this year after taking over from Cade McNamara. In those games, he is 26/30 attempts for 443 yards with three TDs. He hasn’t been asked to do a lot because of Michigan’s strong running game, but has certainly answered the call when asked.
Those kind of numbers will be tough to sustain and if running back, Blake Corum is going to keep notching up TDs at his current rate then he would be the most likely Wolverine to lift the Heisman. He is currently +8000 with Bovada. However, McCarthy does look like legitimate candidate from what he has been able to show so far.
Michael Penix, Jr. (QB, Washington) +4500 with Bovada
Huskies QB, Michael Penix, Jr. is a fifth-year junior transfer from Indiana. Currently the Huskies are asking him to do a lot. He’s already over 1,000 yards for the season and has a QB rating of 180.0. Ticking along at 10.2 yards per attempt, Penix could see himself thrust into the national spotlight should the team keep winning. He is one of our favorite Heisman emerging candidates.