If you didn’t know that Georgia running back Todd Gurley was a Heisman Trophy candidate in 2014, you most certainly know after his scintillating performance against the Clemson Tigers in Georgia’s opening game.
There have been whispers about Gurley as a potential Heisman winner during his first two seasons, and then this year those whispers turned into some fairly loud rumbles.
Being a Heisman winner doesn’t necessarily make for a great season for the team, but it can’t hurt. And while the trophy doesn’t have the impact or meaning that it once did, having a third Heisman winner come out of the Georgia football program would be an impressive accomplishment.
It’s also fair to say that given the last few Heisman winners (excluding Robert Griffin III) it would be refreshing to have a player who represented not only his school, but what the Heisman Trophy is supposed to mean for a college player. Todd Gurley is certainly worthy on all accounts.
So here is where we’ll track how we see Gurley’s chances of winning the Heisman Trophy based on each week’s performance, and the play of other top candidates. We’ll give you his stats, and whether we think he’s move up, down or remained the same in terms of his chances of winning.
#GurleyForHeisman was all the rage on Twitter after the Aug. 30 game. We’ll see if that trend continues this season.
After week one: We’ll have to say that Gurley is the clear frontrunner, with no one else in the country having a performance even close to his.
Game 2 Update: Gurley didn’t do anything to hurt his chances in the loss to South Carolina. He rushed for 131 yards and scored another touchdown, and had an incredible reverse-direction run for a first down during the game. We’ll call it an neutral, although Marcus Mariota may have passed him for the top of the list.
Game 3 Update: This was an “excuse me” week for Gurley, who only played in part of the first quarter against Troy. Although he did typical Gurley things, his lack of carries and yards will inevitably be a strike against him, even though it was of no fault of his own. Look for him to rebound in a big way against Tennessee.
Game 4 Update: Gurley literally ran all over the Tennessee Volunteers, for a career high 208 yards. It was his 51-yard touchdown run that gave Georgia a big lead, and his 4-yard run on 4th down with under a minute to go put the game on ice. Gurley definitely moves up this week.
Game 5 Update: Any time Gurley has a typical Gurley day and can add that he also threw a 50-yard pass completion, it’s a safe bet he’s moved up in the Heisman standings. With Oregon losing and Marcus Mariota having a poor showing, and Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah being throttled by Michigan State, Gurley is clearly the Heisman frontrunner now.