Ranking every Heisman Trophy winner this century

Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /
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Heisman Trophy
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Heisman Trophy winner No. 9: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma (2008)

You have to wonder if Sam Bradford could’ve joined Archie Griffin as the only other two-time winner of the award in college football history had injuries not derailed his career in Norman. Because after a strong freshman season, Bradford showed up as a sophomore and absolutely dominated the college football landscape.

Bradford threw for 4,720 yards, 50 touchdowns and only eight interceptions for the 2008 season, also adding five rushing touchdowns as well. The Oklahoma quarterback looked to be unstoppable. But again, an injury kept him out for much of his junior season before he left for the NFL. Even still, that sophomore season was one for the ages.

Heisman Trophy winner No. 8: DeVonta Smith, WR, Alabama (2020)

There’s a chance that there’s a good bit of recency bias in having DeVonta Smith at the No. 8 spot but that’s how dominant the Alabama wide receiver was this season. There’s a reason that players at his position don’t win the award: it’s rare for a player to be dominant enough to truly separate themselves. Yet, Smith was every bit that good.

Undeniably aided in his production when Jaylen Waddle succumbed to injury, Smith shined as, in only 12 games, he caught 105 passes for 1,641 yards and 20 touchdowns. In the simplest terms, there wasn’t a defense in the country that was capable of containing him and he consistently proved that every time he took the field.

Heisman Trophy winner No. 7: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma (2018)

Baker Mayfield was an undeniable legend for the Sooners, so even though Kyler Murray took over the offense with a ton of hype around him, he had big shoes that he was tasked with filling. It’s safe to say that he was more than capable of doing that as he not only won the Heisman but put forth an effort basically on par with his predecessor.

Murray rushed for 1,001 yards and 12 touchdowns but wasn’t just a runner as the Sooners star also threw for 4,361 yards and 42 touchdowns. He also only gave away seven picks on the year. Suffice it to say that the eventual No. 1 pick hit the ground running in his lone season and was near perfect for the year.