While I fully understood that the Heisman Trophy was Tua Tagovailoa’s to lose at this point, I kept asking all week “How can you just award it to a player who has such inferior stats?”. Yes, he hasn’t played the fourth quarter but his team being a literal death star does not mean that he is. I argued that Dwayne Haskins of the Ohio State Buckeyes and Will Grier of the West Virginia Mountaineers should remain in the conversation because they were pulling their teams to their records while putting up better stats.
That ended Saturday night in Ames as Will Grier threw for 100 yards in his worst performance as a Mountaineer. Unable to see the deep safety blitzing, Grier was sacked 7 times. Many times, especially in the first half, there were opportunities for Grier to avoid the sack and throw the ball away, but he chose to continue to keep the play alive and eventually was sacked. Heisman trophy winners aren’t sacked 7 times and they certainly don’t look that pedestrian. Last year when Iowa State pulled off the upset of the Oklahoma Sooners, eventual winner Baker Mayfield threw for over 300 yards and 2 touchdowns with no interceptions.
The loss in Ames pulls Grier’s chances, as slim as they were. The trophy is Tua’s to lose at this point. The Mountaineers needed to stay undefeated to at least make the case of “we are both undefeated and our quarterback did more with less” which should be the measure of a winner but that won’t matter now.
Tua Tagovailoa - Tua had his “worst” game of the season connecting on only 12 of 22 passes for 265 yards and 3 touchdowns. His QBR for the game was a pedestrian 82.7. On the season Tua has now throw for 1,760 yards and 21 touchdowns. Tua is on pace to throw for 3,268 yards and 39 touchdowns.
Dwayne Haskins - If you want to make the case that Dwayne Haskins is your Heisman winner because of the stats, I am in your corner. Haskins threw for 412 yards and 3 touchdowns against Minnesota and has now thrown for 2,331 yards and 28 touchdowns which leads FBS. Haskins is on pace to throw for 52 touchdowns in 13 games and 4,329 yards.