2. Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma
After last week, I moved Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray to the top of these rankings, thinking that, if he kept performing at the level he was, he had it in the bag. As it turns out, even a masterful performance wasn’t enough for him to keep hold of the No. 1 position. That’s partially due to the play of the new top guy, but also because of the Sooners and Murray getting upset by rival Texas on Saturday.
To be clear, the upset loss was hardly the fault of Murray. While he had two turnovers, the Sooners would’ve been mince meat if not for Murray’s heroics, which included 304 passing yards, 92 rushing yards and five total touchdowns. Because of his individual performance, he stays high, but despite it being an individual award, not getting a win in this rivalry game has to (at least mildly) be held against the two-sport star.
1. Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama
Throughout the 2018 season, I feel that I’ve had a rightful knock on the Heisman Trophy candidacy of Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. At a certain point, I felt like he was going to have to step up and actually play four quarters more than once this season for me to call him the leading candidate. However, he’s now done enough to make himself simply undeniable in this race.
Tua again went off this week in Bama’s crushing win over Arkansas, and again did so while barely looking like he broke a sweat. The sophomore threw just 13 passes, but completed 10 of them for 334 yards and four touchdowns. That now gives Tagovailoa 18 touchdowns passes, zero interceptions and two rushing touchdowns on the year. Yes, how he performs against LSU, Mississippi State and Auburn down the stretch will be critical.
As for now though, the award seems destined for his trophy case.