NCAA Football Odds Week 9 Heisman Trophy Watch
The race for the national championship continues to heat up in the college football online betting odds, and after an eventful slate of games in Week 8, it is time for us to take a look at the latest updates on the NCAAF lines to win the prestigious 2015-16 Heisman Trophy.
So Who’s In and Who’s Out of the NCAA Football Odds Week 9 Heisman Trophy Watch
Entering Week 9, the biggest news, and a bad one at that, is that Baylor’s gunslinger Seth Russell suffered a season-ending neck injury in last week’s victory over Iowa State. The junior quarterback was a strong Heisman helpful after impressing in Baylor’s unbeaten 7-0 run on the season, dazzling the world of football with his astronomical numbers. In his 7 starts for the Bears, Russell threw for 2,104 yards and 29 touchdowns against just six interceptions, and was on pace to putting up more than 4000 yards and 40 TDs.
In his absence, true freshman Jarrett Stidham, who’s fortunately seen some action as a reliever in every game for Baylor this season, will take over the reins in the offense. Having decently completed 24 of 28 passes for 331 yards and 7 touchdowns with zero picks in his relief duties, the Bears can take comfort that Stidham will be a more-than-serviceable backup. However, given how the season is far progressed, it’s hard to see Stidham climbing up the Heisman odds. Essentially, this changes a few things in the Heisman race as we enter Week 9.
Preliminarily, Baylor’s top receiver and Russell’s most potent weapon, Corey Coleman, can now escalate his odds in the Heisman race without sharing the spotlight and votes with Russell. Even more notably, TCU’s dual-threat offensive machine, Trevone Boykin, remains as the solid—and nearly uncontested—QB favorite in the Heisman race now that Russell won’t be pressuring him. All that noted, here is the Heisman Trophy betting update, as we enter Week 9 and the its bevy of activities in the NCAAF online betting lines:
Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU Tigers
Fournette continued to make his case for college football’s top individual prize by racking up 150 yards and a TD on 26 carries in LSU’s 48-20 win over Western Kentucky in Week 8. On the season, the beastly runner has now churned 1,352 yards and 15 touchdowns, underlining why he is the overwhelming favorite to clinch the trophy. Even so, Fournette will be facing a defense like no other, when the Tigers visit Alabama for a big SEC showdown against the Crimson Tide in Week 10. Knowing Alabama and its run-stuffing ways, it will be interesting to see if Fournette will be contained or not.
Trevone Boykin, QB, TCU Horned Frogs
While Boykin and the unbeaten Frogs (7-0) were busy resting their tired legs and arms in Week 8, the rest of the league was under duress—FSU and Utah State were getting their unblemished records ruined, while Russell was exiting the Heisman race. As a result, Boykin has a relatively clearer path on the race to the Heisman and National Championship, in that order. With his Boykin 2,539 passing yards and 25 touchdowns through the air, along with 440 rushing yards and eight additional scores on the ground this season, it is undeniable that is the best bet among QBs to win the award right now. A date with West Virginia at home this Thursday night, followed by a road trip to the unbeaten Oklahoma State next week will certainly test the Frogs, and could easily see them leap out of the class of undefeated playoff-hopeful teams this season. But if Boykin explodes for big numbers and wins for his team (as he has done so often), and let’s say LSU and Fournette are stopped by Bama, then you can be darn sure that this excellent do-all TCU playmaker will be climbing up in the college football odds to win the Heisman trophy.
Derrick Henry, RB, Alabama Crimson Tide
Like Fournette, the Alabama-LSU game could be a huge game-changer for Henry, depending on how he and his team plays. That said, the Crimson Tide have Henry to thank for their narrow 19-14 home win over Tennessee last week, as the stellar runner bulldozed his way to 143 yards and two touchdowns. On the season, Henry has decently rushed for 1,044 yards and 14 touchdowns. Admittedly, his yardages aren’t in the class of Fournette, but with four more games to play, Henry has plenty of time to catch up, or—god forbid—be helped by some sort of injury or suspension of his top competitors.
Corey Coleman, WR, Baylor Bears
Rarely do you find a wide receiver in strong contention for the Heisman race, unless of course that wideout is having an absolutely monster season like Coleman is doing. Helped by the solid arms of Russell, Coleman has been a beast with his vision, speed and well-timed ball-catching skills, totaling 47 catches for a ridiculous 962 yards and 18 touchdowns. Russell’s absence will be hard to take, and his numbers could resultantly take a dip. However, if Stidham steps up to the plate and delivers well in Baylor’s signature smashmouth spread offensive scheme, then there’s no reason Coleman’s Heisman odds (and chances to win the Fred Biletnikoff award) should not improve, especially since Russell is gone and all Baylor votes will fall squarely on his arms.
Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State Buckeyes
Long gone are the early season complaints about Ohio State’s overreliance on Elliot’s legs, as Cardale Jones and J.T. Barrett have both shown tremendous improvement, with the latter QB particularly looking like his solid self in the 2014-15 season. Still, Elliot remains to be a formidable force in the offense. For example, in last week’s 49-7 blowout win over Rutgers, Barrett arguably had his best performance of the season so far, leading a stellar passing unit, but Elliott didn’t take his foot off the pedal, as he ran for 142 yards and two touchdowns. That performance took his season tally to 1,130 yards running and 13 touchdowns. With the Buckeyes still rooted at the helm of the rankings as the No. 1 team in the country at 8-0, Elliot could remain a dark horse Heisman candidate, particularly if he can boost his numbers and Ohio State goes on to finish the regular season unbeaten.