One mans vote: Its Teo time
By MIKE KERN, Philadelphia Daily News
THE POPULAR wisdom seems to be that Johnny Manziel Johnny Football is going to make history. He certainly put up the numbers, in the countrys premier conference. Better numbers than Tim Tebow or Cam Newton. Maybe that alone should be sufficient. Manziel also has the nickname, and he had his Heisman moment in that late-season win at Alabama.
But, for whatever its worth, his stats werent all that in the Aggies two losses, both at home, against Florida in early September and LSU in mid-October. Just saying.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Teo was the poster boy for most everything Notre Dame accomplished this season. And that carries a ton of weight. Well soon find out exactly how much.
For better or worse, the Heisman doesnt always go to the so-called best player. Because that isnt always easy to define. It could be a cornerback in the Pac-12, or a guard at Vanderbilt. Thats for the NFL draft to decide. The Heisman has basically become a popularity contest. It usually goes to the highest-profile skill players, on the highest-profile teams. Simple as that.
Manziel might not finish first-team on at least some All-America teams. Thats just the way it is. I dont think he shouldnt win just because hes a freshman. That shouldnt have anything to do with it. Nor do I think Teo should win just because he played for the team that did something no other Notre Dame team has done in a quarter-century. The bottom line is, voting for either Teo or Kansas State QB Collin Klein is almost like voting for an MVP. And that might be OK, too.
Im one of about 1,000 folks who have a say in this. I have been for a couple of years now. And I try to take it very, very seriously, because it matters. I really favored Klein, to be honest. But in the end, I went with Teo. I could have made a case for all of them and not been wrong. I put Manziel third. Im probably in the minority. But thats my story and theres no going back.
Manziel proves the best by far
By CEDRIC GOLDEN, Austin American-Statesman
JOHNNY MANZIEL will make history tonight when he wins the Heisman Trophy.
For the second straight year, a kid from Texas will hoist the trophy, and for the first time, a freshman will stand as the best player in college football.
At least for the first time in the eyes of Heisman voters. There was a time when those eyes were trained on older players, but Im hopeful that Manziels ascension will change those outdated perceptions.
Manziel did not play like someone without game experience. He embraced the obstacle that was his inexperience, and he did not shy from big challenges.
When I consider which player should win the Heisman, I look at three areas: numbers, impact and the eye test. Manziel has the numbers, with an SEC-record 4,600 yards of total offense. His impact can be summed up in A&Ms 10-2 record and its program-changing upset of defending national champion Alabama, along with the most popular nickname in college football. As for the eye test, few players leaped off the screen like Manziel did this year. It took me back to Michael Vicks days at Virginia Tech. You just couldnt wait to see what he would do with the ball.
Nowhere in my criteria did I mention class, because Manziel shouldnt be labeled or restricted by how many snaps hes taken in college football. If anything, his winning the Heisman Trophy would remove the freshman stigma from future Heisman campaigns. Herschel Walker (1980), Michael Vick (1999) and Adrian Peterson (2004) turned in tremendous debuts, but all lost to upperclassmen. The timing couldnt be better, and its about time a freshman with Manziels credentials be considered the favorite.
The freshman argument is a silly one. Manziels in his second year on campus a sophomore in the classroom.