3 things to know about the 2017 Heisman Trophy race

SANTA CLARA, CA - DECEMBER 01: Stanford Cardinal running back Bryce Love (20) heads for a hole to run through during the PAC-12 Championship game between the USC Trojans and the Stanford Cardinals on Friday, December 01, 2017 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, CA. (Photo by Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
SANTA CLARA, CA - DECEMBER 01: Stanford Cardinal running back Bryce Love (20) heads for a hole to run through during the PAC-12 Championship game between the USC Trojans and the Stanford Cardinals on Friday, December 01, 2017 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, CA. (Photo by Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

The 2017 Heisman Trophy presentation takes place on Saturday in New York City, and while there’s once again not much drama, there are still some tidbits to pass along.

The 2017 college football season has come to a close, and following the announcements last Sunday of the College Football Playoff field and the bowl games, we now gear up for the postseason portion of the year. Before we get to the games, however, it’s time to recognize the players on the field with individual awards for their efforts and accomplishment, and as always, that culminates on Saturday night with the presentation of the Heisman Trophy in New York City.

Three outstanding players from this season were invited to the prestigious ceremony on Saturday. Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield, Stanford Cardinal running back Bryce Love and Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson, who captured the award last year, earned the right to take the trip to the Big Apple to stand next to the bronze statue, with only one of them being able to take it home.

And while we can all pretty much assume who that player will be, leaving out most of the drama that could be associated with the presentation, there still are some tidbits to pass along about this year’s race for the Heisman, beginning with taking a look back to everyone getting a little too excited about one particular player.

We fell into the September Heisman trap again

Believe it or not, college football fans have a tendency to be a tad impatient and jump the gun on certain matters. Many times in the past, this has led us all to crown a Heisman winner before the month of September even comes to a close. “GIVE HIM HIS HEISMAN,” we shout, as we forget there are still two more months to play out.

Well, such was the case regarding Penn State running back Saquon Barkley.

Barkley came out of the gate flaming hot in the 2017 season, dazzling us all with video game-like plays while embarrassing opposing defenses at the same time. In a close win on the road against Iowa on Sep. 23, Barkley went on national television and torched the Hawkeyes for 211 yards on 28 carries, seemingly locking up the Heisman in the eyes of many on that night.

However, the rest of Barkley’s campaign tapered off from that night. The rest of the season, Barkley would only crack the 100-yard rushing mark two more times while putting out some underwhelming performances — such as racking up just 35 yards against Rutgers.

Barkley, who is likely headed off to the NFL, wasn’t terrible this season by any means, as some even believe he was snubbed of at least getting an invite to the ceremony. That could be up for debate, but what isn’t up for debate is that most of us fell into that September Heisman trap yet again.

We’re college football fans, though. We don’t learn lessons very easily.

Another Stanford player will come up short

If you’re a star Stanford player, you probably shouldn’t get your hopes up too high when you’re invited to the Heisman ceremony. Back in 2009, Toby Gerhart was considered by many to be the best player in college football, but he lost out to Alabama’s Mark Ingram. Then, the next two seasons, Andrew Luck lost out to Cam Newton and Robert Griffin III, respectively. And, most recently, Christian McCaffrey finished second in the 2015 race to another Alabama running back in Derrick Henry.

Unfortunately for the Cardinal, another outstanding star from Palo Alto will miss out on bringing the school its first Heisman since Jim Plunkett in 1970.

Taking over for McCaffrey full time this year, junior running back Bryce Love was just absolutely mind-blowing at times. Finishing the year with 1,973 yards and 17 touchdowns, you needed to keep your eyes on Love at all times because you got the feeling he could rip off a big play whenever he felt like it. Numbers aside for a second, if there were a Heisman awarded to the toughest player in the country, Love might be the runaway winner of that one. Battling an ankle injury this season, the junior continuously went out there and performed at a high level through the pain, most recently putting on a gutsy 125-yard show in the Pac-12 Championship Game loss to the USC Trojans.

Alas, though, another Stanford standout will be left out in the cold on Saturday night once again, but it shouldn’t be understated just how terrific Love was to watch this season.

Baker Mayfield is winning and people are going to be upset

Despite nearly 2,000 yards on the season, Love will in fact not be taking the trophy home, and neither will Jackson become to first repeat winner since Archie Griffin. It’s all but a certainty at this point that Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield, after narrowly missing out the past two seasons, will be your 2017 Heisman Trophy winner.

When you look specifically at what he’s done on the field in leading the Sooners to the College Football Playoff where they will face off with Georgia in the Rose Bowl on New Year’s Day, it’s hard to deny the former Texas Tech walk-on is the best player in the nation. He’s thrown for 4,340 yards and 41 touchdowns to just five interceptions, lighting up opposing defenses throughout the season. Strictly on the field, yes, it’s hard to view Mayfield as anything but the Heisman winner for this season.

But, many college football fans out there will not be very accepting of Mayfield walking away with the hardware on Saturday night. As we all know by now, the Oklahoma quarterback doesn’t always come across as the most humble player in the game, to put it lightly. He’s had a few instances this season where he was forced to offer up an apology, most notable among them when he screamed obscenities at the Kansas sideline while grabbing his crotch after they disrespected him by not shaking his hand at the coin toss and taking some cheap shots on him during the game.

So, if you weren’t aware of this already, don’t expect a love fest for Mayfield when he runs away with the prize. The pitchforks and torches will be out in full force.

This is college football after all, though. What fun are things really when everyone is in agreement?