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Updated Heisman Watch Week 3

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Photo courtesy of ftw.usatoday.com
Photo courtesy of ftw.usatoday.com

Week 3 of college football is in the books. We had an FCS school in North Dakota State, travel to Iowa and take down the number 13 Hawkeyes after they paid them $500K. Clemson finally came to play and took down South Carolina State 59-0. Number 9 Wisconsin barely snuck past a now 0-3 Georgia State, and Oklahoma is now out of the College Football Playoff contention. It was an interesting Saturday to say the least, but lets take a look at the top 5 Heisman candidates after this Saturdays play.

5) Jabrill Peppers – Michigan

The Wolverines were looking sloppy at home against Colorado and in front of Tom Brady. That quickly changed when Jabrill Peppers took over. It is hard to define what position the Junior plays. He lines up as a safety, and moves up to play linebacker, and is a weapon on offense. Needless to say, Peppers is one of the most electrifying players in college football. On Saturday, Peppers registered 9 tackles (3.5 for a loss), one sack, 208 all purpose yards and the game sealing touchdown. Could Peppers be the first Wolverine to win the Heisman award since defensive specialist Charles Woodson? Only time can tell!

4) Deshaun Watson – Clemson

It was not a pretty start for Deshaun Watson and his Clemson Tigers. With narrow victories over Auburn and Troy, the Tigers got  some more help with their schedule when they hosted South Carolina State. Clemson went on to win 59-0 and Watson was able to help pad his stats in limited action before he was pulled for the backups. On the season, the Junior has thrown for 692 yards, and seven touchdowns, while rushing for 84. Watson, who finished third in the 2015 Heisman race has some work to do. It is still early in the season and he has time before he has that “ah” moment, but Watson needs to put up some big numbers if he wants to keep up with the pack.

3) Leonard Fournette – LSU

Yes we know, Leonard’s numbers do not look deserving to be considered in the top five. But just wait. He is just getting started. After sitting in LSU’s week two game against Jacksonville State, Fournette returned against Mississippi State where he recorded another multi touchdown game. Fournette rushed the ball 28 times for 147 yards and two scores. On the season, Fournette has 285 yards and just the two scores. If Fournette can pick up rushing yards, he will have a chance. His only issue is the schedule. The Tigers host Ole Miss and Alabama in a three week span. Win both those contests and he will have a chance.

2) Christian McCaffrey – Stanford

Stanford is 2-0 and has a chance to run the table this season. With the Cardinals having their off week during week 2, McCaffrey will not have much rest. The 2015 Heisman runner up, had a solid performance against rival USC, rushing for 165 yards on 30 carries to go along with one score. On the short season, Ed McCaffrey’s son has rushed for 291 yards with three scores, and has 11 receptions for 113 yards and one touchdown. McCaffrey made a name for himself last year with his kickoff and punt returns. Look for him to add a score or two on special teams.

1) Lamar Jackson – Lousville

This was a no brainer. Even if you have not watched a second of Louisville football this fall, you have seen his highlights on ESPN, and read about him on twitter. Through three games, the Sophomore from Florida, has thrown for 913 yards and 8 scores, to go along with 464 yards on the ground and 10 more touchdowns. Jackson has been impressive both through the air and on the ground and he had showcased that in all three contests this September. Just yesterday, he led the Cardinals to a 63-20 over the second ranked Florida State Seminoles. He made it look easy running and spinning through defenders. Looking ahead to the schedule, Jackson and company have a big test in two weeks when they travel to Clemson to take on the Tigers and then a matchup in November against Greg Wards and the now ranked number 6 Houston Cougars.

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