Posted by Bryan Fischer
Now that the deadline to declare for the NFL Draft has come and gone, it’s never too early to take a look at who might be in the frontrunners for the 2011 Heisman Trophy. With National Signing Day approaching however, who from the class of 2011 might one day end up hearing his name called in New York? Here’s five recruits who could end up hoisting the trophy sometime during their college careers (in alphabetical order):
Cibolo (TX), 6-foot, 220 pound running back. Committed to Texas.
Since Ricky Williams won the Heisman in 1998, Texas has had just two running backs finish in the top ten in the country in rushing (Jamaal Charles in 2007 and Cedric Benson in 2004). That’s two players in the top ten in 13 years. With the Texas offense looking more like North Texas’, expect a healthy dose of Brown as a freshman in order to take the load of whoever will be the quarterback in 2011. Brown hits the hole hard and is a North-South runner. He might have to adjust to the speed of the game and improve his vision after getting the ball but there’s no reason he couldn’t become the next Texas back to crack the national rushing list. He will also have the advantage of having a channel devoted to showing his highlights 24/7.
Rock Hill (SC), 6-foot-6, 250 pound defensive end. Considering Alabama, South Carolina and Clemson.
Defensive players have had to climb Mount Everest just to be invited to New York for the Heisman but 2009’s push by Ndamukong Suh should have others reconsidering before writing off a defensive player. Clowney is the most advanced defensive end coming out of high school in some time, having the speed, size and explosiveness you look for. One NFL scout told my colleague Bruce Feldman he would draft Clowney in the first round in this year’s NFL Draft. A season where he could at least replicate Suh’s stats in 2009 (12 sacks, 23 tackles for a loss) isn’t out of the question and given the recognition he already has, one has to have Clowney on the list somewhere.
Oviedo (FL), 6-foot-4, 225 pound quarterback. Committed to Florida.
Being the quarterback at Florida generally positions a player to make a run at the Heisman no matter what you do the season before. With Charlie Weis as offensive coordinator and installing in a pro-style offense, Driskel has the chance to put up very good numbers when he eventually takes over under center. His legs are an asset but he has a very strong arm and quick release. The best quarterback in the class, Driskel has a chance to turn things around at Florida and then take a trip north to New York.
Hollywood (FL), 6-foot-2, 190 pound quarterback. Committed to Oregon.
Unless you’re a die-hard recruitnik or Oregon fan, you might be wondering who Randall is. A dual-thread QB from talent-rich South Florida, Randall is slated to take over for Darron Thomas eventually. Given the numbers Thomas and his predecessors have put up in Oregon’s prolific offense, it’s no surprise to find Randall on this list. Chris Houston, better known as the Heisman Pundit, has touted Randall as possible Heisman winner and if you watch some tape, it’s hard to disagree. A strong arm and the speed of a fast running back, Randall might be the player who can bring home the Heisman that former Oregon quarterback Dennis Dixon almost did.
Los Angeles (CA), 5-foot-9, 165 pound athlete. Committed to USC.
Being the running back at USC usually sets you up pretty well to win the Heisman. After all, five Trojan running backs have won the award (well, four actually). In the backfield is where Thomas says he will play at USC but he might be better suited in the secondary. With scholarship limits hitting USC over the next few years, head coach Lane Kiffin might choose to play Thomas on both sides of the ball. Nicknamed ‘The Black Mamba,’ he could be a factor in all three-phases of the game in the mold of Heisman winner Charles Woodson.
Who could win the Heisman from the class of 2011?
Posted on: January 26, 2011 3:47 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2011 9:03 pm