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Posts Tagged ‘Landry Jones’

P.S.R. Heisman Watch: Week 2

This week’s moving and shaking has not impacted the top group: the four or five leading contenders remain in place, with little movement. But along the back end, opening-week showings from several under-the-radar skill players – not too far under the radar, to be honest – has led to a retooling of the second tier. Who knew that Taylor Martinez had that sort of arm? Who knew that Denard Robinson was going to lay such an egg? The latter question raises another interesting idea: What does Robinson need to do to leap back into the mix for the Heisman? It won’t be merely about numbers for Michigan’s senior, though that’s certainly part and parcel of any player’s candidacy – Robinson needs to cut down on interceptions, do more with his legs, score touchdowns, what have you. But Robinson also needs highlight-reel moments, the sort that could remind the voting public why he remains one of the most dangerous players in college football; beyond that, he needs wins. A run to Pasadena would put the bloom back on Robinson’s rose. Before getting to the list, another installment of This Date in Heisman History:

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    P.S.R. 2012 Heisman Watch: Preseason

    Remember when Andrew Luck was a lock for the Heisman? His Heisman campaign took off roughly midway through his sophomore season, when Luck led Stanford to its first major breakthrough, and then reached a fever pitch once he opted to return for one more season with the Cardinal. At this point a year ago, Luck was the odds-on favorite to not only win the Heisman but to win it with ease – going wire-to-wire unlike any Heisman winner in recent memory. That Luck didn’t was not a reflection on his own level of play, which was superb, but rather an illustration of just how hard it is to maintain your grasp on the top spot while dozens of other qualified candidates state their case over the three months of the regular season. Last fall, Luck’s early lead evaporated once Robert Griffin III led Baylor to its finest season in decades, if not the finest season in school history. A year later, Matt Barkley finds himself in a similar situation. Before getting to the leading contenders, the first installment of This Date in Heisman History:

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      No. 9: Oklahoma

      Before Ryan Broyles was lost for the season, the Sooners’ lone loss came as a result of the worst 30 minutes Oklahoma had played since John Blake. After Broyles tore up his knee in the second half against Texas A&M, the Sooners lost to Baylor for the first time in program history and to Oklahoma State for the first time since 2002. Through nine games, Oklahoma was averaging 8.3 yards per pass attempt; extrapolated over the entire season, that total would have tied O.U. with five other teams for 13th-best in the country. Over their last four games, the Sooners averaged 6.6 yards per attempt; extrapolated over the entire season, that total would have tied O.U. with seven other teams — including Duke and Minnesota — for 85th in the country. The final month defined Oklahoma’s season; in a nutshell, the Sooners could only weather so many storms before the offense fell apart. As the offense went, so went Oklahoma. At least O.U. won’t have to worry about losing Broyles in 2012; he’s now healthy, making plays for the Detroit Lions.

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        The Year in Review: Oklahoma (10-3, 6-3)

        The first set of numbers that backs up what everyone knows already — that Oklahoma wasn’t the same team without Ryan Broyles:

        Record re-injury 8-1
        Record post-injury 2-2

        The second set of numbers, which includes the entirety of the win over Texas A&M, that backs up what everyone knows already:

        Passing offense with 264 of 412 (64.1 percent) for 3,428 yards, 28 touchdowns, 9 interceptions
        Passing offense without 101 of 171 (59.1 percent) for 1,114 yards, 1 touchdown, 7 interceptions

        I’ve done the math. That’s more losses in four games than Oklahoma had in its first nine games. Before Broyles was lost for the season, the Sooners’ lone loss came thanks to the worst 30 minutes O.U. has played since John Blake. After Broyles tore up his knee in the second half against the Aggies, the Sooners lost to Baylor for the first time in program history and to Oklahoma State for the first time since 2002.

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          Jones, Ball Decide; Griffin’s Up Next

          Andrew Luck will go, but Matt Barkley has already decided to return for his senior season. Yesterday, Oklahoma’s Landry Jones followed in Barkley’s footsteps in opting for one more year in Norman. “There’s still more to do,” Jones said in announcing his decision. That leaves only one elite underclassmen still undecided on his future plans: Baylor’s Robert Griffin III, he of the Heisman Trophy, and Baylor’s 2012 hopes lie in the balance. Jones’ decision was an easy one; he’d bottomed out, as did the Oklahoma offense as a whole, after Ryan Broyles’ knee injury on the first Saturday of November.

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            P.S.R. Heisman Watch: Week 14

            Is there anything left to prove? Have you made your pick? For some, there’s no more work to be done: Andrew Luck’s season is over, for example, and we won’t see Stanford’s quarterback again until bowl play, when the Cardinal will likely face off against the Big 12 winner in the Fiesta Bowl. But others won’t spend December solely on the awards banquet. Robert Griffin III gets another shot at Texas this weekend. Landry Jones and Brandon Weeden face off in Stillwater in prime time. Case Keenum and Houston meet Southern Mississippi in the Conference USA title game. So while a few stand pat, other contenders still have a chance to make a final, lasting impression. Now, This Date in Heisman History:

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              P.S.R. Heisman Watch: Week 13

              After months of relative certainty – Andrew Luck was going to take home the Heisman, most thought – we’re down to only one guarantee when it comes to this season’s winner: the winner, when he is selected, will be a quarterback. Guaranteed, lock it in, set in stone, this we know for sure: a quarterback. It’s going to be one of Luck, Jones, Weeden, Griffin III, Moore and the like, and it won’t be any player not under center. This is guaranteed. Well, I’m fairly sure that’s guaranteed. And now, another installment of This Date in Heisman History:

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                P.S.R. Heisman Watch: Week 12

                I thought it was over. Done deal, lock it in, make space on the mantle: Andrew Luck was taking home the Heisman Trophy regardless of whether Stanford won or lost against Oregon on Saturday. Then the Cardinal lost, and what was once a one-horse race is now a three-horse race, if not more. In propelling the Oregon offense to its highest point total in nearly two months, LaMichael James has reentered the Heisman race with a bang. After playing nearly flawless football against Texas Tech, Brandon Weeden has become the leader — ahead of Luck — in the minds of many voters. And in a nice bounce-back Saturday, Trent Richardson grinded out 127 yards in leading Alabama past Mississippi State. The Heisman race is on — better late than never. And now, another installment of This Date in Heisman History:

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                  The Countdown

                  A bottom-to-top assessment of the F.B.S. landscape heading into the 2012 season.