By now, you've surely heard that the Downtown Athletic Club awarded the Heisman trophy to Alabama tailback Mark Ingram, who narrowly beat out Stanford tailback Toby Gerhart for college football's most prestigious individual award. Well, the blogging community disagrees. As you'll remember, I participated in the blogger Heisman organized by The Blue Workhorse (TBW). TBW award goes to Gerhart instead of Ingram. In fact, Ingram finished third in TBW's tally, with Nebraska DT Ndamukong Suh finishing second. Gerhart beat Suh by only one vote, making his margin even slimmer than the margin between Ingram and Gerhart for the official trophy.
Although I voted for Ingram, Suh, and Gerhart in that order from first to third (I also voted for C. J. Spiller as an honorable mention), the results of TBW's tally aren't all that surprising to me. A good bit of popular support has arisen among bloggers and other informed spectators for Gerhart and Suh over the past week. If anything, I'm surprised that Suh didn't win the blogger trophy, as he has, reasonably so, been the focal point of criticism of the Heisman regarding its bias towards skill-position players. Indeed, the more one thinks about it, the one one falls into line with this line of thinking. Suh had an absolutely unbelievable year for a defensive tackle. If ever a defensive player deserved the award, it was Suh. Unfortunately, I doubt you'll ever see a defensive tackle bring home the trophy in New York; a defensive back like Charles Woodsen that does something else like return kicks or runs the Wildcat can win it by combining stellar defensive play with some other statistical measure, but a big guy like Suh that doesn't have many opportunities to score TDs is just at too huge a disadvantage to sway a crowd of voters that believe jaw-dropping stats equal Heisman. It's really a minor miracle that Suh made it to New York this year in the first place; maybe we should take that, along with the fact that neither Tim Tebow nor Colt McCoy won the award, as evidence that the often embattled award is moving in a good, more credible direction.
A few other notables about TBW's outcomes:
- Like myself, the bloggers believed Clemson's C. J. Spiller was more deserving than Tebow or McCoy. The fact that the disappointing Tebow and McCoy got to go to New York in Spiller's stead shows that things might not have really changed all that much this year, at least in the sense that although most voters didn't vote for Tebow or McCoy to win the award, many did leave them on their ballots, seemingly out of inertia.
- Tebow finished with no first-place votes. It's really pretty shocking how far Tebow's stature has fallen over the course of this season. Basically no one outside of Gainesville, FL and Bristol, CT still believe in the power of the Almighty Tebow. He's still a great player, but the aura is gone.
- I'm really fairly surprised that Gerhart did so much better than Ingram in the blogger's minds. When you compare the stats and the defenses the two played against, I see little reason to believe that Gerhart had a better year. What am I missing?
- George Rogers is still the only player from a college in South Carolina to win the Heisman. Suck it, Clemson. (Unfortunately for them, Auburn fans have lost the right to make these kinds of jokes about their rival.)