The Heisman Race has gotten interesting. With under 4 weeks to go until the ceremony takes place in New York, most NY sportsbooks have every candidate in plus money. CJ Stroud is the favorite throughout, while Tennessee quarterback Hendon Hooker’s odds have taken a hit since his team’s loss to Georgia. Blake Corum and Drake Maye continue to gain ground, but do they have a chance to catch Stroud?
Let’s break down where each of these guys stand in the Heisman race, and give our best bet.
The Front Runner
CJ Stroud has been the leader of this race for a while now. His season hasn’t jumped out at some because of the already lofty expectations for him coming into the year. Ohio State’s 10-0 start has made it hard for oddsmakers to not make Stroud the favorite. During his run, he’s managed to throw for 34 touchdowns and only 4 interceptions.
This is Stroud’s race to lose. His team will square off with Michigan on November 26th from the Horseshoe in what could be the game where the quarterback has his Heisman moment. The winner will likely end up in the college football playoff (CFP), which means it will be a game where Stroud will be expected to show up big.
The large contrast in the quarterback’s Heisman odds shows that this race is still wide open with a few weeks to play. There are 3 other guys who have the capability of stepping up and winning the trophy.
Who Could Challenge Stroud?
The 2, 3, and 4 guys in this race all remain fairly tight. It’s Hendon Hooker that owns the two spot. The loss to Georgia broke his momentum but he was able to rebound with a nice performance against Missouri.
Hooker’s Heisman chances face an uphill battle because of the unlikelihood that his team will have a game on championship weekend. There may be nothing more important in college football than recency bias, and although Hooker will surely earn himself a spot in New York, the voters won’t have seen him play in a while.
Hooker’s best odds to win the award are +400 on FanDuel. The Tennessee quarterback will need to keep up the good play. Additionally, he’ll be hoping Ohio State drops a contest and for chaos to reign supreme down the stretch as his team vouches for a spot in the CFP.
Blake Corum’s name has also started to gain traction in this race. The Michigan running back came into the season with +8000 odds on BetMGM and has since become a premier part of the Michigan offense. Corum started getting attention when he saved the team early in the season against Maryland, going for 243 yards on the ground and adding 2 TDs. A huge performance against Ohio State could not only earn his team a spot in the CFP but could also win him the Heisman Trophy.
Corum’s best odds are on BetMGM, where he’s listed at +600. Unlike the guy directly in front of him, Corum has better control of his destiny the rest of the way.
North Carolina quarterback, Drake Maye, has managed to climb up the odds table. The 19-year-old opened the season off the board but has since led the Tar Heels to a 9-1 record while throwing for 34 TDs and 3 INTs. Maye is only a freshman but is already starting to make a name for himself. A conference championship victory over Clemson should secure Maye a spot in New York.
Maye’s longest odds come on DraftKings where he’s listed at +550.
CJ Stroud is the best bet to win the Heisman Trophy. You can still take him for plus money and his team’s got the best chance of reaching the CFP when compared to the other 3 candidates.
Hendon Hooker would be a great bet if his team had a game on championship weekend. Tennessee still has a chance to reach the playoff, but no SEC Championship will probably end up being Hooker’s undoing in this award race.
Anything could happen if Ohio State drops a game with a poor performance from Stroud, but with the Buckeyes looking sharp this year it’d be tough to bet on it.