Trevor Knight Odds to win the 2014 Heisman Trophy
by Dave Schwab - 7/16/2014
It's very interesting to look back over the course of recent history to see how a Heisman Trophy hopeful is born. The last two seasons we have seen relatively unknown quarterbacks come out of nowhere to do what no other college football player has done, and that is claim the sport's most prestigious award as a true freshman.
Many times a player is anointed a Heisman hopeful based on what he has done in his first two or three seasons at the collegiate level. However in some rare instances, as in the case of Oklahoma quarterback Trevor Knight, all it took was one stellar performance against a Top-5 program in a high-profile bowl game to attract of world of attention from the college football world.
Knight's name was probably added to this year's list of hopefuls for college football's most outstanding player award just hours after he played a huge role in Oklahoma's stunning 45-31 upset of Alabama as a 17-point underdog in last season's Allstate Sugar Bowl. He lit up one of the top defenses in the nation with 348 yards passing and four touchdowns while completing 32-of-44 throws to earn MVP honors.
Bovada has obviously been paying attention to all of the hype this past offseason . It currently has Knight listed at 16/1 odds to win this year's Heisman Trophy. First, he has to turn this overnight fame into long-term success as the Sooners' full-time starting quarterback this season. However, if everything goes according to plan this story could possibly end with a trip to New York in December to pick up his Heisman Trophy.
If you go back to the first game that Knight started at quarterback for Oklahoma, you would have never believed he could find himself in this position at this point in his career. The Sooners opened the 2013 season by crushing Louisiana-Monroe 34-0. And while he did throw three touchdown passes in that game, he had a total of 86 yards passing while completing just 11-of-28 attempts. What he did extremely well in that game was pick up key yardage through his ability to run with the ball. Knight ended that game with 103 yards rushing while averaging 7.9 yards a carry.
His numbers for the entire 2013 season were nothing to write home about with a total of 471 yards passing while competing with Blake Bell for playing time. Knight did show some major promise in a late-season 41-31 victory over Kansas State by completing 14-of-20 passes for 171 yards and one touchdown. The week before in a romp over Iowa State he rushed for 123 yards and one score on just 10 attempts.
Knight is not the biggest quarterback in the world at 6-foot-1, but he does pack a solid 201 lbs. on that frame. He also has decent arm strength, but he will have to improve his accuracy to not only have any shot at winning the Heisman but to also have a shot at continuing his career at the next level. The one thing that could work in his favoris the recent legacy of Oklahoma quarterbacks winning the Heisman Trophy. Jason White won the award in 2003, and Sam Bradford took home the trophy in 2008.
Getting a fast start out the gate is imperative for a player like Knight to have any chance to outshine the level of competition that is listed ahead of him on Bovada's Heisman futures odds list. A less-than-competitive-nonconference schedule is already working against him, so he will need a big game on the road against West Virginia on Sept. 20 in the Sooners' Big 12 opener.
Another important test on this year's schedule is the annual Red River Rivalry clash against Texas on Oct. 11 at the Cotton Bowl. Knight will also have a chance to shine against Baylor in front of the home-town crowd on Nov. 8. If he remains one of the top four or five Heisman contenders through the month of November, he would have an excellent chance to pick up some votes with a big game against Oklahoma State at home on Dec. 6.
Knight could turn out to be a great story this season after bursting onto the scene with that impressive performance against the Crimson Tide, but unless he does something unreal on the field in every one of this year's big games it will be extremely hard for him to rise above all the talent that currently have better odds on Bovada's Heisman futures board.
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Read more articles by Dave Schwab
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