After being considered the clear-cut No. 2 contender in the Heisman Trophy race for weeks (or months), Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Kyler Murray is now the betting favorite to win the award, per Bovada.
Kyler Murray - Last Week: 7/2 This Week: 1/2
Tua Tagovailoa - Last Week: 1/5 This Week: 3/2
Dwayne Haskins - Last Week: 33/1 This Week: 60/1
Travis Etienne - Last Week: 100/1 This Week: Off the Board
Will Grier - Last Week: 20/1 This Week: Off the Board
Trevor Lawrence - Last Week: 100/1 This Week: Off the Board
Gardner Minshew - Last Week: 50/1 This Week: Off the Board
Murray ranks first nationally in passing efficiency rating (205.7; the NCAA single-season record of 198.9 was set by Baker Mayfield last year) and yards per pass attempt (11.9), is tied for first in PPG responsible for amongst P5 players (23.5), and is second in the FBS in total offense per game (380.4) and yards per completion (16.82). What separates him from other candidates is his effectiveness as a runner, as Murray has rushed for 11 TDs and 892 yards (7.3 yards per attempt).
On top of that, Murray has had to come up big in a number of close games, which was best demonstrated during a game-clinching drive this past Saturday in which he was 3-3 on third-down opportunities. That drive, of course, was capped by glorious touch pass to Grant Calcaterra.
Huge third down catch and hold after a big hit by Lee Morris. #Sooners pic.twitter.com/18D6CnuMLu— Sooner Gridiron (@soonergridiron) December 1, 2018
TOUCHDOWN— Sooner Gridiron (@soonergridiron) December 1, 2018
MURRAY TO CALCATERRA.#BOOMERSOONER pic.twitter.com/p9xX4ARkiv
Meanwhile, Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa played poorly before leaving the SEC Championship Game due to injury, ending the Heisman race without making much of a statement.
ESPN’s coverage of the Heisman Trophy Presentation will begin Saturday, Dec. 8 at 7 p.m. Finalists will be announced this evening during Monday Night Countdown.