DALLAS (CBSFW.COM) — Three Heisman Trophy finalists were invited to New York for this weekend’s ceremony to recognize the top player in college football.
While Oregon’s Marcus Mariota, Alabama’s Amari Cooper, and Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon are all deserving candidates, there are a handful of other candidates that have legitimate claims.
Here are six of the nation’s best players that will NOT be in New York this weekend.
Trevone Boykin, TCU
The junior QB led one the nation’s top offenses, throwing for 3,714 yards and rushing for 642 more. TCU scored 46.8 points per game, second only to Baylor’s 48.8.
He ranks third nationally with 363 total yards per game, and was named The Associated Press Big 12 offensive player of the year.
If he’s playing in Austin and not Fort Worth, he’d be making the trip to New York — and probably a trip to New Orleans as well.
Jameis Winston, Florida State
You can evaluate the stats any way that you wish, but last year’s Heisman Trophy winner has led the Seminoles to 27-straight wins and now the College Football Playoff, a year after capturing the National Championship.
2014 STATS: 27 Total TDs, 3,639 total yards, and a 65 percent completion rate.
Not too shabby.
Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
Two losses in the second half of the season doomed Prescott as a serious candidate, but his body of work speaks for itself.
The junior rushed for 939 yards and 13 touchdowns, while also passing for 2,996 yards and 24 touchdowns.
He rushed for over 100 yards in four of his first six games, but failed to do so at all in the team’s final six games.
He’s not in New York this weekend, but this time next year, it’s reasonable to expect he will be.
Tevin Coleman, Indiana
Indiana was 4-8 and won just one game in the Big 10 this season. Case closed.
But it’s ignorant not to consider what Coleman did at a non-traditional football program.
Coleman was second in the nation with 2,036 yards rushing and averaged 7.54 yards per carry, both school records. That included four games with over 200 yards rushing.
With offenses keying in on him each week, that’s an impressive feat.
Scooby Wright, Arizona
The name alone would garner my vote, but unfortunately, Wright plays on the wrong side of the ball for this award.
The Arizona linebacker was named the Bronko Nagurski award winner, given to the nation’s top college defensive player.
The 6-foot-1, 246-pound Wright compiled 89 tackles — 27 for a loss — and 14 sacks as a sophomore.
Charles Woodson was the last defensive player to win the Heisman in 1997. That won’t change anytime soon.
Rashard Higgins, Colorado State
Who led the nation in receiving touchdowns? Hint: It’s not Amari Cooper.
In just 11 games (compared to Cooper’s 13), Higgins caught 89 passes for 1,640 yards and 17 touchdowns.
The nation’s most prolific wide receiver also hauled in 11 passes over 40 yards and six over 50 yards.
You may not have seen him play this season, but your opportunity will come as Colorado State faces Utah in the Las Vegas Bowl, a nationally televised game.
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