Athlon Sports Heisman Voting: Week 8

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Can anyone take the Heisman Trophy away from Stanford's Andrew Luck?

Can anyone take the Heisman Trophy away from Stanford's Andrew Luck?

-by Braden Gall (@AthlonBraden on twitter)

Each week, the Athlon editors will vote on the most prestigious award in all of college football. A nine-man conglomerate of college football gurus from Athlon Sports will vote for their top 10 Heisman Trophy candidates. The votes will be tallied and the result will be posted as the Athlon Sports Heisman Watch List every Wednesday of the regular season.

Note: The scoring system is as follows: A first place vote earns a player 10 points. A second place votes earns nine points - so on and so forth until the 10th place player receives one point.

Alabama’s Trent Richardson continues his upward movement and is now tied with Wisconsin’s Russell Wilson at No. 2 in the Athlon Heisman voting. Richardson and Wilson both posted highlight reel performances this weekend in major blowouts: T-Rich breaking ankles and Wilson catching a touchdown. Both teams are undefeated and are crushing opponents on a weekly basis. Richardson, however, has the inside track on the National Championship game and is probably the only player who can challenge Stanford’s Andrew Luck for the stiff-armed trophy.

Luck, thanks to one Athlon Sports Managing Editor moving the Cardinal quarterback from fifth to second on his ballot, now has more Heisman “points” than ever before. He has eight first place votes and one second place vote, giving him 89 of the possible 90 total points.

1. Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford (89/90 total points, 8/9 first place votes)
Season Stats: 129/181, 1,719 yards, 18 TD, 3 INT, 13 att., 60 yards, TD

Stanford is the only team that has covered the spread in every game it has played this season. That is, of course, due to the fact that Luck has been obliterating opposing defenses. Against Washginton State on the road, Luck completed 23-of-36 passes for 336 yards (his third 300-yard effort in four games) and four touchdown passes in the 44-14. Stanford now faces the top challenge of their season thus far when they welcome the Keith Price-led Huskies to The Farm. Next Game: Washington

  Name Pos. Team Pts 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th Ballots
1. Andrew Luck QB Stanford 89 8 1 - - - 9
2. Russell Wilson QB Wisconsin 73 - 2 6 1 - 9
3. Trent Richardson RB Alabama 73 1 3 1 4 - 9
4. Robert Griffin III QB Baylor 64 - 2 2 1 3 9
5. Kellen Moore QB Boise State 51 - 1 - 1 1 9
6. Landry Jones QB Oklahoma 41 - - - 1 2 8
7. Brandon Weeden QB Oklahoma St 32 - - - - 3 8
8. Tajh Boyd QB Clemson 14 - - - 1 - 4
9. Ryan Broyles WR Oklahoma 10 - - - - - 3
10. Tyann Mathieu DB LSU 9 - - - - - 4
11. LaMichael James RB Oregon 8 - - - - - 4
12. Sammy Watkins WR Clemson 6 - - - - - 2
13. Denard Robinson QB Michigan 5 - - - - - 2
14. Case Keenum QB Houston 5 - - - - - 2
15. Montee Ball RB Wisconsin 4 - - - - - 2
16. Justin Blackmon WR Oklahoma St 3 - - - - - 1
17. Darron Thomas QB Oregon 2 - - - - - 2
18. Bernard Pierce RB Temple 2 - - - - - 1
19. Ray Graham RB Pitt 2 - - - - - 1
20. Marcus Lattimore RB South Carolina 1 - - - - - 1
21. Matt Kalil OL USC 1 - - - - - 1

2t. Russell Wilson, QB, Wisconsin (73)
Season Stats: 95/128, 1,557 yards, 14 TD, INT, 22 att., 182 yards, 2 TD, 1 rec., 25 yards, TD

Wilson didn't need to do much to top Indiana 59-7. He threw only 17 passes and ran the ball only twice. Yet, Wilson still managed to produce 232 yards of total offense/all-purpose yards. He threw for 166, rushed for 42 and caught a 25 yard TD lob from Montee Ball. He is now leading the nation in QB efficiency at 210.93 and will face his biggest test and most hostile environment of the season when he leads his unbeaten Badgers into East Lansing this weekend. Next Game: at Michigan State

2t. Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama (73)
Season Stats: 132 att., 912 yards, 15 TD, 15 rec., 179 yards, TD

T-Rich was on full display this weekend - as he should have been against the worst defense in the SEC - when Alabama breezed past Ole Miss 52-7. He averaged over 10 yards per carry by rushing 17 times for 183 yards and scoring four times (including a 76-yard statement TD run). Richardson leads the SEC in rushing (130.3) and is fourth nationally. He has moved up the rankings each week and is now in a dead heat with Wilson and many consider him the the player best suited to topple Andrew Luck - playing on the best team in the nation and all. The real test will come against LSU. Next Game: Tennessee

4. Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor (64)
Season Stats: 142/182, 1,950 yards, 22 TD, 2 INT, 72 att., 295 yards, 2 TD

Griffin was masterful again - but lost again. RG3 completed 28-of-40 passes for a school-record 430 yards and three touchdowns in the 55-28 loss to Texas A&M. No one has thrown more touchdown passes than Griffin's 22, he is the nation's No. 2 most efficient passer (205.71) and is still more valuable to his team than anyone else in the nation. However, if he expects to be in New York come Decemeber, he will need to lead his team to an upset victory or two. Next Game: bye week

5. Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State (51 pts)
Season Stats: 151/199, 1,729 yards, 21 TD, 4 INT, 7 att., (-11) yards

Moore threw just four incompletions (26-of-30) for 338 yards and four touchdowns in the 63-13 romp over Colorado State. Moore is now 44-2 as a starter and is one win away from Colt McCoy's NCAA record. Unfortunately, Moore needs to be extra special (especially against TCU) in order to reinsert himself into the Heisman race as he has dropped in our voting after rolling up a combined score of 120-20 in the last two. The Broncos schedule might be Moore's undoing so he needs to dominate the Falcons this weekend. Next Game: Air Force

6. Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma (41)
Season Stats: 171/253, 2,177 yards, 16 TD, 6 INT, 12 att., 11 yards, 2 TD

Jones posted his fourth consecutive 360+ yard effort when he completed 29-of-48 passes for 363 yards and three touchdowns in the 47-17 win over Kansas (they didn't cover the spread by the way). In the four games since the win over Florida State in which he was held largely in check, Jones has thrown for 400.1 yards per game and 14 of his 16 touchdowns. He is back on track and has the Sooners pointed directly for New Orleans by way of Stillwater. Next Game: Texas Tech

7. Brandon Weeden, QB, Oklahoma State (32)
Season Stats: 189/260, 2,098 yards, 16 TD, 6 INT, 12 att., (-68) yards

Weeden wasn't magical in Austin like he was in College Station, but his team walked away with a huge conference win over the Longhorns, 38-26. Despite only throwing for 218 yards and a single touchdown, Weeden consistently got his offense into the right play - as is evident by the 20.0 yards per carry for Jeremy Smith (seven attmepts for 140 yards and two scores). The elder statesmen will face the Big 12's No. 2 defense in Mizzou this weekend - a team that he has never taken a snap against. Next Game: at Missouri

8. Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson (14)
Season Stats: 145/232, 2,012 yards, 19 TD, 3 INT, 70 att., 157 yards, 3 TD

There has been no faster riser than Mr. Boyd. After three straight wins over Auburn, Florida State and Virginia Tech, Boyd has taken care of business against Boston College and at Maryland. He threw for 270 yards and four touchdowns (and ran 11 times as well) in the huge second-half comeback against the Terps to keep his team unbeaten. Boyd leads the ACC in total offense at 309.9 yards per game and will continue to move the Heisman rankings if the Tigers can continue to win. Next Game: North Carolina

9. Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma (10)
Season Stats: 60 rec., 815 yards, 9 TD, 13 PR, 128 yards

The talkative receiver was the toast of Norman this week as one of college football's biggest records fell to Mr. Broyles. No receiver in the history of the game has ever caught more passes than Ryan Broyles' 326 receptions - breaking Purdue's Taylor Stubblefield previous mark of 316 (2001-04). The Sooner wideout caught 13 passes for 217 yards and two scores in the lop-sided win over Kansas and has now taken his rightful spot in the pantheon of NCAA football greats. In fact, he may put the record out of reach with seven more games left in his career. Next Game: Texas Tech

10. Tyrann Mathieu, DB, LSU (9)
Season Stats: 42 total tackles, 5.0 TFL, 1.5 sack, 2 INT, 3 FR, 4 FF, 15 PR, 119 yards, 2 TD

There hasn't been a bigger play-maker on the defensive side of the ball this season than the smallish cornerback from Baton Rouge. The relentless Honey Badger, whose stat line speaks for itself, wasn't needed much in the 38-7 pounding of Tennessee on Rocky Top (one tackle, two punt returns). It's what's not in the boxscore that counted this weekend. The Vols' Da'Rick Rogers, who Mathieu mirrored the entire game, had been averaging 6.4 receptions and 102.6 yards per game. Mathieu held Rogers to three receptions for 63 yards and no touchdowns. Next Game: Auburn

Previous Voting:

Athlon Sports Heisman Ballot: Week 7

Athlon Sports Heisman Ballot: Week 6

Athlon Sports Heisman Ballot: Week 5

Athlon Sports Heisman Ballot: Week 4

Athlon Sports Heisman Ballot: Week 3

Athlon Sports Heisman Ballot: Week 2

Athlon Sports Heisman Ballot: Week 1

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<p> Athlon Sports Heisman Voting: Week 8</p>
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