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Tennessee QB Hendon Hooker becomes the Heisman Trophy leader after a historic victory in the week

Heisman Watch, Hendon Hooker
Brianna Paciorka/News Sentinel/USA TODAY NETWORK

Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Bryce Young won the 2021 Heisman Trophy. Below, we examine the 2022 Heisman Watch and the candidates who will have a chance to take the trophy away from Stroud next season.

As we enter Heisman Watch 2022, our Heisman Trophy ballot and player data will guide you through the college football season.

Sportsnaut’s Heisman Trophy Ballot

Our Heisman Trophy candidates are evaluated every Saturday and Monday. The performances of the top players are analyzed on Saturday, and the rankings are then adjusted to new players introduced on Monday with the latest Heisman odds via DraftKings.

Rank Player/School/Position Statistics for 2022 Week 7 stats Next opponent
1. CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State 1,737 passing yards, 24-3 TD-INT, 207.6 QB rating BYE vs Iowa
2 Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee 1,817 passing yards, 15-1 TD-INT, 287 passing yards, 3 TDs 385 passing yards, 5-1 TD-INT, 94.2 ESPN QBR vs UT Martin
3 Caleb Williams, QB, USC 1,590 passing yards, 14-1 TD-INT, 144 passing yards, 3 TDs, 85.8 QBR TBD BYE
4 Bryce Young, QB, Alabama 1,657 passing yards, 16-3 TD-INT, 150 passing yards, 3 TDs 455 yards, 2 TDs, 89.1 ESPN QBR BYE
5 Blake Corum, RB, Michigan 901 yards, 13 TDs 181 scrimmage yards, 2 TDs BYE
6. Will Anderson Jr., EDGE, Alabama 10.5 TFLs, 5 sacks, 1 pick-six 1 solo match, 0.5 TFL BYE
7. DJ Uiagalelei, QB, Clemson 1,462 passing yards, 14-2 TD-INT, 311 rushing yards, 3 TDs TBD vs Syracuse
8 Stetson Bennett, QB, Georgia 2,033 passing yards, 7-1 TD-INT, 115 passing yards, 5 TDs 289 passing yards, 2 TDs, 91.5 ESPN QBR vs. Florida

Just-missed Heisman Trophy contenders: Cameron Rising, QB, Utah; Sam Hartman, QB, Wake Forest; Dorian Thompson-Robinson, QB, UCLA

Heisman Watch: Stocks after Week 7

Hendon Hooker, quarterback, Tennessee Volunteers

Syndication: The Knoxville News-Sentinel
Jamar Coach/News Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK

If Hendon Hooker wins the 2023 Heisman Trophy, the college football world will remember Week 7. Facing one of the best defenses in college football – Alabama allowed 166.3 passing ypg with a 3-2 TD-INT entering Saturday – Hooker carried 385 yards in the air, 56 on the ground and caught five touchdown passes. The statistics are phenomenal. What will put Hooker at the top of our Heisman Trophy voting in Week 8 is a game-winning drive with pinpoint accuracy under pressure to snap a 15-game losing streak against Nick Saban.

Related: College football QB rankings

Blake Corum, running back, Michigan Wolverines

Syndication: Detroit Free Press
Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK

Each of the top Heisman Trophy candidates has that performance against a rival or tough opponent that bolsters their resume. Michigan Wolverines running back Blake Corum delivered it in Week 7. Facing a Penn State defense that allowed just 3 ypr and 79.8 rushing ypg, Corum exploded for over 90 yards before halftime and finished Saturday with 166 yards and two scores . Honestly, Corum’s numbers could have been higher if not for the involvement of Donovan Edwards (173 yards, 2 TDs). He still ranks above Corum in the Heisman Watch.

  • Blake Corum Stats (2022): 901 yards, 13 touchdowns
Best College Football Stadiums: 2022 NCAA Gridiron Top Spots Ranking

Heisman Trophy Race: Falling Stocks Enter Week 8

Brock Bowers, tight end, Georgia Bulldogs

NCAA Football: Kent State at Georgia
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Brock Bowers is one of the best players in college football, but he doesn’t belong on the Heisman Watch. The Georgia Bulldogs tight end entered Week 7 with 460 yards and five touchdowns, outstanding numbers and on pace to surpass his 2021 stats. However, that’s nowhere near enough to even crack the top 10 leaders in scrimmage yards. Saturday didn’t change anything, Georgia crushed Vanderbilt without Bowers making a big play. Bowers is a future NFL star, but nothing he does warrants a Heisman Trophy vote right now.

  • Brock Bowers Stats (2022): 393 receiving yards, 82 rushing yards, five TDs

Related: Highest Paid College Football Coaches

Will Anderson Jr, edge rusher, Alabama Crimson Tide

NCAA Football: Texas A&M at Alabama
Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

One of our Heisman Watch favorites entering the season, it’s time to move on from Will Anderson Jr. The Alabama Crimson Tide recorded just one sack and zero quarterback hurries on Hendon Hooker tonight, allowing him to get comfortable in that pocket for most of the game. Anderson Jr. had opportunities to step up a game-changing play, it never happened. It will be a long wait before a defensive player wins the Heisman Trophy again.

Tennessee's Jalin Hyatt has a game-high five-catch day to upset Alabama

Heisman Trophy Odds Entering the 2022 Season

Player Odds
CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State +200
Bryce Young, QB, Alabama +350
Caleb Williams, QB, USC +600
Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas +1600
Quinn Ewers, QB, Texas +2000
TreVeyon Henderson, RB, Ohio State +2000
DJ Uiagalelei, QB, Clemson +2000
Will Anderson Jr, EDGE, Alabama +2000
Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida +2000
Dillon Gabriel, QB, Oklahoma +2000
Kedon Slovis, QB, Pittsburgh +2500
Jaxson Dart, QB, Ole Miss +2500
Tyler Van Dyke, QB, Miami +2500
Braelon Allen, RB, Wisconsin +3000
Spencer Rattler, QB, South Carolina +3000
Heisman Trophy 2022 odds via BetMGM
Most Heisman Trophy winners from college football's elite schools

Here are the Heisman Trophy results and a breakdown of why Bryce Young finished atop the 2021 Heisman voting.

2021 Heisman Trophy Voting Results

Player: 1st place: 2nd place: 3rd place: TOTAL:
Bryce Young, QB, Alabama 684 107 45 2,311
Aidan Hutchinson, EDGE, Michigan 78 273 174 954
Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh 28 175 197 631
CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State 12 118 127 399
Will Anderson, EDGE, Alabama 31 79 74 325
Kenneth Walker III, RB, Michigan State 18 53 85 245
Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss 10 32 56 150
Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati 5 15 36 81
Jordan Davis, DL, Georgia 9 15 18 75
Breece Hall, RB, Iowa State 0 1 7 17

With 83% of the total possible points, Bryce Young finishes seventh in Heisman Trophy voting history.

Heisman Watch: Why Bryce Young Won the Heisman

Bryce Young stats and the Heisman case

NCAA Football: Arkansas at Alabama
Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports
Passing Yards Submit YPG: YPA: Deposit TD / TD% INT / INT% QB rating Completion rate
4,322 332.5 9.3 43 / 9.3% 4 / 0.86% 175.4 68%

Bryce Young is having a Heisman moment

Bryce Young is a Heisman Trophy winner. Winning the SEC Championship game would be enough in itself to win the most coveted individual trophy in sports, but this is so much more. The Georgia Bulldogs came in with easily the best defense in college football and never had an answer for Young.

Georgia Bulldogs Defense Stats (Week 1 – Week 13)

  • Opponent Third Down Conversion Rate: 33.7%
  • Opponent red zone attempts per game: 1.8, second fewest in FBS
  • Opponent scoring average per first half: 2.6, lowest in FBS
  • Georgia sack rate: 10.27%, sixth highest in the FBS
  • Opponent first downs per game: 13.6, second fewest in FBS
  • Opposing quarterbacks vs. Georgia: 57.83% completion rate (27th), 170 passes per game (2nd), 100.7 passer rating (2nd), 5-12 TD-INT ratio

After going scoreless in the first quarter, Young came alive over the next 15 minutes. He engineered three unanswered goals, making accurate throws down the field and displaying perfect ball placement wherever he wanted. When the Bulldogs tied the game with two minutes left, Young countered with a drive of his own that ended with an 11-yard run before halftime.

  • Bryce Young’s first half stats vs. Georgia: 286 passing yards, 40 rushing yards, 3 total touchdowns.

Young was without John Metchie to start the second half but still kept going. On Alabama’s opening drive of the third quarter, he hit Jameson Williams for a huge touchdown.

Not only did Young perform well in the SEC Championship Game, but he had his best game of the season against #1 Georgia. A 461-yard, four-touchdown game sends Alabama into the playoffs. Of course, that also guarantees we’ll see Bryce Young’s name on the Heisman Trophy.

Bryce Young’s Heisman resume

Replacing 2020 Heisman finalist Mac Jones, Alabama quarterback Bryce Young is playing at an absurd level in his first full season as a starter. Mind you, this comes a year after the Crimson Tide saw Najee Harris, DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle enter the NFL as first-round picks.

While Stroud got off to a relatively slow start, Young fired out of the gate. In his first three games, including wins against Miami (FL) and Florida, the sophomore has completed 68% of his attempts with 811 passing yards, 10 touchdowns and zero interceptions.

After that, the 6-foot-6 quarterback hit a bit of a rough patch in his next three contests. He has thrown an interception in three straight games, his worst performance of the year coming against Texas A&M. In Nick Saban’s first loss to the former assistant, Young completed just 58.% of his 48 attempts and threw a costly interception at the 3-yard line that decided a 41-38 loss.

Best College Football Stadiums: 2022 NCAA Gridiron Top Spots Ranking

But Young bounced back from that game, beating Mississippi State, Tennessee and LSU for 8 touchdowns and 1,021 passing yards while going 3-0. Fittingly, he’s also posting some eye-popping stats over the last two games, including a shootout win over ranked opponent Arkansas.

  • Bryce Young Stats (11-12 Weeks): 52-of-63 completion (82.5%), 829 passing yards, 15.9% TD rate, 10-0 TD-INT

While Young may fall behind Stroud in terms of hitting wins, which will sway some voters, he operates with a smaller supporting cast. While Jameson Williams (1,218 yards, 13 TDs) and John Metchie III (895 yards, 7 TDs) are future NFL players, Alabama doesn’t have that third star in its receiving corps.

We also saw Young rise to the occasion in a Week 12 matchup in which Alabama’s defense gave up 35 points to the Razorbacks and the same Crimson Tide roster that gave up 41 points in a loss to Texas A&M. Stepping up in those moments is a boost to Young’s Heisman resume.

Bryce Young vs. Auburn

A Heisman moment isn’t always about the whole game. While a six-touchdown performance against a top opponent deserves all the attention it gets, voters notice things like this, too. Alabama’s offense couldn’t do anything for 58 minutes Saturday as it failed to find the end zone in the Iron Bowl.

Then Bryce Young got the ball at the Alabama 3-yard line for a touchdown with 92 seconds left. After back-to-back misses, things looked bleak for the Crimson Tide. Young then flipped the switch, stepping into the biggest moment of his young college football career and taking it to the Auburn 28-yard line with 60 seconds left. On the next play, he hit one of the best scores we’ll see all year to tie it in the final seconds.

An incredible throw and memorable drive against an Auburn defense that played nearly perfect for 59 minutes. With the Iron Bowl sent to overtime for the first time in history, Young got the ball first and promptly booted a touchdown that tied Auburn. Both teams traded field goals in the second overtime.

  • Bryce Young Stats vs. Auburn: 25-of-51, 317 passing yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT, two two-point conversions

Young took the field in the third overtime and immediately scored, connecting for the two-point conversion. Auburn tied the game at 22, continuing this college football classic. After a stop at the Crimson Tide, Young hit John Metchie again for the comeback win. That earned him the No. 1 spot on the Heisman Watch.

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