In what was an anticlimactic ceremony, Oklahoma’s Sam Bradford came away from the Downtown Athletic Club of New York carrying the Heisman Trophy.
Bradford beat out Texas’ Colt McCoy and the reigning Heisman winner, Florida’s Tim Tebow, for the honor. Bradford becomes only the second sophomore ever — Tebow was a sophomore last season when he won — to win the Heisman.
This announcement came as no surprise to me — as I had predicted it early in the day — but I was somewhat disappointed by the result.
After seeing the voting totals, however, I thought it was a supremely interesting Heisman race. I mean all one needs to see is the final votes to see how interesting the race truly was.
Bradford received 300 first-place votes, McCoy 266 and Tebow 309. Not since 1956 — Tommy McDonald of Oklahoma — had a player drawn the most first-place votes and finished third.
Truly where it mattered most was in the Southwest part of the country, where many votes went to Graham Harrell and Michael Crabtree — who finished fourth and fifth respectively.
In the end, I’m not surprised by how this played out, but I’m just a little disappointed in the result. Bradford had the most talent around him all season — and he appropriately thanked that help after being called up — and he was closely followed by Tebow. Not among those with the blessing of a Percy Harvin or DeMarco Murry was McCoy.
McCoy had no Crabtree to throw to, and no Harvin to hand the ball off to. Instead, McCoy had to lead his team in rushing and become the most accurate passer in the history of the NCAA just to put his team in position to make a run at the BCS Championship.
By the definition of the award, McCoy deserved it. He was the most outstanding player in college football this season. No player meant as much to their respective teams as McCoy meant to the Longhorns. And for no other reason than that, he should have won.
Congratulations go out to Bradford for a wonderful season, and he deserves most honors bestowed upon him. However, it takes less effort to do what Bradford did this season than what it took to do what McCoy did.
With McCoy already announcing he will return to Texas next season, the question turns to whether Bradford will come back to OU — he is a draft eligible third-year sophomore — or head to the NFL. Will Tebow go to the NFL after three wildly successful seasons? Who will be favored for the award next year?
This was a great kickoff to the FBS postseason, and now I can’t wait to watch the last two Heisman Trophy winners match up head-to-head in the BCS Championship. Should be fun.