Can Mason Rudolph Actually Win the 2017 Heisman?

first_imgLamar Jackson (Louisville): 6-1 odds (Last year’s Heisman winner)3,543 yards passing, 30 TDs, INTs – QBR: 148.821,571 yards rushing, 21 TDsJalen Hurts (Alabama): 9-1 odds2,780 yards passing, 23 TDs, 9 INTs – QBR: 139.12954 yards rushing, 13 TDsJ.T. Barrett (Ohio State): 9-1 odds2,555 yards passing, 24 TDs, 7 INTs – QBR: 135.31845 yards rushing, 9 TDsJake Browning (Washington): 12-1 odds3,430 yards passing, 43 TDs, 9 INTs – QBR: 167.5245 yards rushing, 4 TDsDeondre Francois (Florida State): 14-1 odds3,350 yards, 20 TDs, 7 INTs – QBR: 142.10196 yards rushing, 5 TDsBaker Mayfield (Oklahoma): odds N/A3,965 yards, 40 TDs, 8 INTs – QBR: 196.38 (led NCAA)177 yards rushing, 6 TDsRudolph has a couple of things going for him. First off, he may have the best receiving corps in the nation. The Cowboys have probably 5-6 receivers that could probably be the No. 1 option on several teams.“It’s great,” said Rudolph on the problem of spreading the ball around. “It makes my job a lot easier with what we’ve got. It’s going to be a fun summer and a fun fall camp with so many targets out there. It’s on my shoulders to make sure I distribute the ball to all of them.”The importance of an actual running game cannot be overstated. We’ve seen in the past how defenses can key in on a one-dimensional OSU passing attack. With Justice Hill and an improving offensive line to keep them honest, the offense could open up even more.Numbers are important but they’re only part of the equation. Team success plays a massive role, as well. And if the Cowboys can come close to living up to their expected potential, it will be because of Mason Rudolph.Here’s a look the last four quarterbacks to win the Heisman and their team’s success that helped earn the award.Lamar Jackson (Louisville): 6-1 odds (Last year’s Heisman winner)3,543 yards passing, 30 TDs, INTs – QBR: 148.821,571 yards rushing, 21 TDsRecord: 9-4Rank: No. 21 in Final AP PollMarcus Mariota (2014 Heisman winner)4,454 yards passing, 42 TDs 4 INTs – QBR: 181.75770 yards rushing, 15 TDsRecord: 13-2Ranked: No. 2 in Final AP PollJameis Winston (2013 Heisman winner)4,050 yards passing, 40 TDs, 10 INTs – QBR: 184.80219 yards rushing, 4 TDsRecord: 14-0Ranked: No. 1 in Final AP Poll (National Champion)Johnn Manziel (2012 Heisman winner)3,706 yards passing, 29 TDs, 9 INTs – QBR: 155.301,410 yards rushing, 21 TDsRecord: 11-2Ranked: No. 5 in Final AP PollThe award is given out before bowl season but one thing all these quarterbacks shared was that team success. Aside from Jackson, the last five Heisman winners’ teams have finished in the top 5 nationally. Is Mason Rudolph going to have that on his resume? He’ll likely need it to earn an invite to New York.To get to that point, Rudolph and his Cowboys will likely have to beat Oklahoma twice. With the new format for determining the Big 12’s champion, the top two teams will take part in a rematch at the end of the season. Insert 13th data point. Subtract common sense.Can Rudolph win the Heisman?It will take an historic season from him, which seems reasonable. It will also take Oklahoma State exorcising their Sooner demons. If both can be accomplished and OSU finds itself atop the Big 12, Rudolph will have a chance. Last week, OSU’s athletic department sent out a cryptic tweet with a not so cryptic message. Mason Rudolph is the key. He’s the driving force to Oklahoma State’s offense and its team’s success.And he’s the No. 1 reason for optimism heading into 2017.“I think his success over a three-year period and his numbers kind of speak for themselves,” said Mike Gundy following OSU’s spring game. “He’s winning. He’s a great leader. We’re always a little tentative about that because I don’t want to put pressure on him, but I think it’s fair play that he’s earned that.”Gundy is right. Rudolph is winning; and at a pretty high clip. In his two years and some change, Rudolph is 22-6 as a starter. He’s beaten every Big 12 opponent except for Baylor and will get one more crack at them this fall.He’s the face of a perennial 10-win program but somehow the best-kept secret among Heisman candidates.Is this the year for Rudolph to finally shine?How plausible is Rudolph’s Heisman candidacy?The Heisman trophy is given to “the outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity … ” As of late, it’s become a QB-dominated award. The last 20 have gone to 14 quarterbacks, five running backs and one cornerback/punt returner (Charles Woodson). If we go last 15, it’s even more lopsided, with 12 of the winners coming from behind center.So, based on what recent history has told us and in an effort to compare apples to apples, let’s take a look at the seven QBs that currently have better odds (according to Bovada) to win than Rudolph.Baker Mayfield was excluded from Bovada’s odds but is included in this list since he will certainly be near the top once his disciplinary situation is revealed and because I don’t expect him to miss much time, if any.Here are Rudolph’s numbers from last year, followed by the seven other QBs ahead of him in the odds.Mason Rudolph (Oklahoma State): 16-1 odds4,091 yards passing, 28 TDs, 4 INTs – QBR: 158.9461 yards rushing, 6 TDsThe FieldSam Darnold (USC): 5-1 odds3,086 yards passing 31 TDs, 9 INTs – QBR: 161.07250 yards rushing, 2 TDs While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *