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10 Amazing Heisman Trophy Stats You Need to Know in 2016


Without question, the Heisman Trophy race has tightened up as the college football season has come to a close.

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At one point, it appeared as though Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson would run away with the award. However, due to some late Cardinals losses and a few electric performances from several other players, there is a little drama going into Saturday night's presentation at the New York Athletic Club.

Jackson will go into the night as the favorite, as he has accounted for 51 total touchdowns, 30 passing and 21 rushing. The sophomore also is responsible for 4,928 total yards passing and rushing, but his team's losses to Houston and Kentucky to close the season don't give him much momentum.

Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson was in this position last year and many thought that after his performance in the College Football Playoff that he deserved the award over eventual winner Derrick Henry, the running back from Alabama. As it stands, Watson could very well take it home this time with 3,914 yards and 37 touchdown passes.

One of the more unique candidates in years comes in the form of Michigan's Jabrill Peppers. Although he is technically listed as a defensive back, Peppers also plays outside linebacker and takes snaps on offense, where he has 170 rushing yards and three touchdowns. On defense, he's made 66 tackles, 13 for a loss, three sacks and an interception.

Then there are two entries from the same team, as Oklahoma will be represented by quarterback Baker Mayfield and wide receiver Dede Westbrook. Mayfield, a junior, has completed 71.2 percent of his passes for 3,669 yards and 38 touchdowns. Westbrook has caught 74 passes for 1,465 yards (19.8 ypr) and 16 touchdowns.

So there's plenty to choose from. Who will the voters go with?

5: Number of times, not including this year, where multiple players from the same team were invited to Heisman ceremony

In 2004 and ‘05, USC's Matt Leinart and Reggie Bush went. The Trojans’ duo was joined by a pair of Oklahoma Sooners in 2004 – Jason White and Adrian Peterson. In 2002, Miami's Willis McGahee and Ken Dorsey made the final cut, as did Ki-Jana Carter and Kerry Collins from Penn State in 1994.

8: Heisman winners between Oklahoma and Michigan

Mayfield and Westbrook will be gunning to be the sixth Heisman Trophy winner in Oklahoma school history, while Peppers would mark the fourth from Michigan.

0: Heisman winners from Clemson and Louisville

Either Watson or Jackson would be the first winner in his program's history.

1991: The last time a wide receiver won the Heisman

Westbrook will be facing long odds, as this is typically not an award that goes to receivers. The last one to win the trophy was Michigan's Desmond Howard in 1991.

1997: The last time a defensive player won the award

Peppers would join elite company if he wins, as fellow Michigan legend Charles Woodson won the award as a cornerback for the Wolverines in 1997.

2: Number of Oklahoma quarterbacks who have won since 2003

A Mayfield win would make him the third Oklahoma quarterback to win since 2003, when Jason White won it for the Sooners. Sam Bradford took the honor in 2008.

9: Consecutive times a non-senior has won

Westbrook is the only hope to break this streak of non-seniors to win the award. The last senior to take home the trophy was Ohio State's Troy Smith in 2006.

50 percent: The amount of winners from the SEC over the last 10 years following this season

There will be no representative from the SEC this year, which means five out of the last 10 winners will have come from that conference.

7: Number of winners in the last 10 years whose team has been in the BCS title game or College Football Playoff

This bodes well for Watson, as the voters tend to look kindly upon players whose teams are in the running for big postseason success. Watson's Clemson team, along with Alabama, Ohio State and Washington, is in the final four.

3: Number of sophomores who have won the award

Jackson would make just the fourth sophomore in the history of the award to win, as Florida's Tim Tebow, Bradford and Alabama's Mark Ingram won from 2007-09.

— Written by Adam Kurkjian, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and is a reporter for the Boston Herald. He has covered the World Series, Super Bowl, Stanley Cup playoffs, Boston Marathon and Little League World Series, among other events from the high school, college and pro ranks. Follow him on Twitter @AdamKurkjian.