Heisman Finalists Announced, Derek Carr Left Out

Brian Bahr

Fresno State's senior quarterback helmed one of the most prolific offenses in the country, but he is not among the six finalists for the prestigious award.

Derek Carr led the Fresno State Bulldogs to an 11-1 record and an outright Mountain West title, but Heisman voters must have been lukewarm about his efforts.  Six athletes earned invitations to the Downtown Athletic Club in New York City this morning, and Carr was not among them.

Quite frankly, this half dozen baffles me, since I believe that Carr was penalized for an off-day in his conference championship when Jordan Lynch and (to a lesser extent) Jameis Winston had similar performances on similar stages.  A.J. McCarron may not be the best player on his own team, let alone the nation.  Johnny Manziel has not been nearly as dynamic as he was in 2012 and, like it or not, was the quarter back on the sixth-best team in his conference.  Andre Williams is deserving for his significant role in Boston College's revival, but it is difficult to see much difference between Tre Mason and Bishop Sankey or Ka'Deem Carey.  If one were to point to his performance in the SEC title game, I would understand, but I would not be convinced.

The table below is for the sake of comparison, but I will note that:

  • Carr led the nation in individual total offense by nearly 50 yards per game over any of the finalists (415.3 ypg to Manziel's 368.2), and the Bulldogs as a team had more total offense than those of the finalists (third in the nation)
  • Carr also directed a top-five scoring offense (Winston is the only finalist to do so)
  • Carr had more passing yards and touchdowns in Fresno's first halves (2997 and 32) than McCarron had all season (2697 and 26)
  • Carr ran more plays than any of the finalists and averaged more yards in those plays than three of them (Lynch, Williams and Mason)
  • Hypothetically, if Carr had maintained his season averages in the postponed game against Colorado, he would have finished with the third-highest number of passing yards in a season since 2007 (Graham Harrell, Case Keenum) and accounted for more touchdowns than anyone but former Heisman winner Sam Bradford (55 total TDs in 2008) in the same time span.
Passing Yards Rushing Yards Total Offense Total TDs INTs QB Rating Completion %
Derek Carr 4866 117 4983 50 7 161.51 70.1
Jameis Winston 3820 193 4013 42 10 190.06 67.9
Jordan Lynch 2676 1881 4557 45 7 140.84 63.1
Johnny Manziel 3732 686 4418 41 13 170.43 69.1
A.J. McCarron 2676 21 2697 26 5 165.88 67.6
Andre Williams -- 2102 2102 17 -- -- --
Tre Mason -- 1621 1742 22 -- -- --

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