As the final whistle blew, and the LSU Tigers began celebrating their College Football Playoff National Championship Game triumph, the countdown to Week Zero began. Sadly, the 2020 college football season will now be a shell of its former glory.
Coronavirus showed up and ruin everything. (Well, almost everything.) Despite the Big Ten and Pac-12 joining dozens of lower-budget athletic conferences in postponing fall sports, “The Stubborn Six” — the ACC, SEC, Big 12, American, Conference-USA, and Sun Belt — are powering forward and intend on playing college football this fall.
As is tradition, we can’t have a college football season without a Heisman Trophy winner, even if that means some really great players aren’t getting their chance to chase glory.
Heisman Watch 2020
Ohio State Buckeyes star Justin Fields is the biggest casualty in this race, as many thought the first-team All-Big Ten quarterback could runaway with the voting. Joining him were USC’s Kedon Slovis, Penn State’s Sean Clifford, Oregon’s Tyler Shough and Minnesota’s Tanner Morgan as Power 5 quarterbacks with outside shots to win the Heisman. (Keep in mind: LSU quarterback Joe Burrow was getting 100-1 odds before setting the NCAA single-season record for touchdown passes.)
Quarterbacks aside, we won’t get to see Purdue wide receiver Rondale Moore crash the party after he opted out to prepare for the 2021 NFL Draft before the Big Ten’s decision. Oregon running back CJ Verdell was coming off a Pac-12 Championship MVP performance, and the junior amassed over 1,000 rushing yards in back-to-back seasons.
A lot of potential Heisman finalists are on the shelf, but there are plenty more contenders ready to make that (virtual) trip to New York City.
BetOnline.ag updated their 2020 Heisman Odds after the three remaining Power 5 conferences finalized their schedules. The lead dog is obviously Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence (+200), followed by the Oklahoma Sooners’ rising star Spencer Rattler (+900), the No. 1 pro-style quarterback recruit of 2019.
Despite only one defensive player getting any buzz (an unwritten statute I will never understand), there were six Alabama Crimson Tide players among the potential Heisman candidates for 2020 despite losing Tua Tagovailoa and Jerry Jeudy from last year’s offense.
Here are the updated Heisman Trophy odds as of August 20, 2020.
Preseason Heisman Trophy Odds 2020
Trevor Lawrence, QB (Clemson) — 2/1
Spencer Rattler, QB (Oklahoma) — 9/1
D’Eriq King, QB (Miami) — 14/1
Myles Brennan, QB (LSU) — 14/1
Sam Ehlinger, QB (Texas) — 16/1
Mac Jones, QB (Alabama) — 16/1
Chuba Hubbard, RB (Oklahoma State) — 20/1
Ian Book, QB (Notre Dame) — 20/1
Sam Howell, QB (North Carolina) — 20/1
Bo Nix, QB (Auburn) — 25/1Advertisement
Kyle Trask, QB (Florida) — 25/1
Travis Etienne, RB (Clemson) — 25/1
Najee Harris, RB (Alabama) — 30/1
Spencer Sanders, QB (Oklahoma State) — 33/1
Bryce Young, QB (Alabama) — 50/1
DeVonta Smith, WR (Alabama) — 50/1
Ja’Marr Chase, WR (LSU) — 50/1
Kylin Hill, RB (Mississippi State) — 60/1
Dillon Gabriel, QB (UCF) — 66/1
Jaylen Waddle, WR (Alabama) — 66/1Advertisement
Micale Cunningham, QB (Louisville) — 66/1
Pooka Williams, RB (Kansas) — 66/1
Chatarius Atwell, WR (Louisville) — 75/1
Javian Hawkins, RB (Louisville) — 75/1
Brock Purdy, QB (Iowa State) — 100/1
Derek Stingley Jr., CB (LSU) — 100/1
Jaret Patterson, RB (Buffalo) — 100/1
Trey Sanders, RB (Alabama) — 100/1
Tylan Wallace, WR (Oklahoma State) — 100/1
Zamir White, RB (Georgia) — 100/1