College football’s most prestigious individual trophy will be given out this year. We just don’t know when. Those who vote for the Heisman Trophy winner are watching and at least a dozen players are on the radar at this early stage of the staggered start season.
Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence leads the first USA TODAY Network Heisman survey of 2020. This is not surprising, as he was widely considered the front-runner entering the campaign before the COVID-19 pandemic started wreaking havoc on the fall schedule. He’s done little to damage his chances, thus far, throwing for 848 yards and seven touchdowns without a pick through three games. In our first weekly survey of 21 official Heisman electors who work for USA TODAY Network properties, Lawrence was mentioned by 19, including 16 first-place nods.
Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) throws a pass against LSU during the first half in the College Football Playoff national championship game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Photo: Mark J. Rebilas, USA TODAY Sports)
A couple of Florida Gators, quarterback Kyle Trask and tight end Kyle Pitts, are the closest challengers. Trask, who picked up one more point than his teammate has accumulated 684 passing yards and 10 TDs through two games. Pitts is leading the country with six receiving scores. A couple of Alabama players, quarterback Mac Jones and receiver Jaylen Waddle, are also getting noticed.
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The race is far from settled, however, as voters have yet to see players from some conferences not yet playing. Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields, who figures to be the Big Ten’s leading candidate, did get one third-place mention.
While we aren’t sure when the award will be presented, we can make a few assumptions. The ceremony will almost certainly be virtual, and it will take place later than usual with most conference championship games pushed back to Dec. 19.
“The Heisman Trophy Trust is closely monitoring the 2020 College Football Season. An announcement regarding the 2020 Heisman will be made in due course. No timetable has been set,” said Heisman Trust associate director Tim Henning.
Contributing: Paul Myerberg
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