On Monday, the Heisman Trophy committee came out with the list of the finalist for this year’s award.
The players selected by the committee are as follows: Oklahoma QB- Baker Mayfield, Stanford RB- Bryce Love, and Louisville QB- Lamar Jackson.
SDSU’s Rashaad Penny isn’t on the list, and I think that’s a big mistake. The decision makes the committee look lazy and totally disinterested in any player that doesn’t play in a Power Five conference. This kind of thought process needs to be abolished.
This piece is intended to highlight exactly why Penny should be on the podium in New York City next Saturday night.
When you look around the running back position in NCAA football, you can make the argument that three or four backs had truly special seasons.
Those players were: Stanford’s Bryce Love, Penn State’s Saquon Barkley, Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor, and San Diego State’s Rashaad Penny.
When deciding who’s the most outstanding performer out of a certain position you have to take a look at how important each player is to his team’s success. After all, the Heisman Trophy is not for the “best” or the most “exciting”, but for the most outstanding player.
Out those four running backs, only Barkley and Penny played special teams, and although Barkley had a kickoff return for a touchdown against Ohio State, he wasn’t very effective for most of the season. Penny, on the other hand, had two touchdowns and was constantly giving SDSU great field position.
When it comes to the running game, there’s not much of an argument for any other running back. Penny led the nation in rushing yards with 2,027 and 19 TD’s. You also have to take into account that when Penny was on the same field as Love, he outplayed him. That should be a factor.
Look, I’m not trying to be a homer. Like I said above, I recognize that Love is a heck of a running back and that he plays for a national brand. However, the award is supposed to go to who is better on the field. Any college football coach not named David Shaw would agree that Rashaad Penny was better in 2017.
I also think that some of the blame should be put on the San Diego media. For much of the football season, all they have been talking about is that franchise that LEFT this town. Perhaps if the local media covered ONLY San Diego football teams, maybe Penny would’ve been invited to New York.
At the end of the day, Rashaad Penny has a bright future ahead of him and he’s been an absolute pleasure to watch. But if college football wants to grow in the eyes of more fans, there’s no doubt in my mind that the should pay attention to all of their players. Even those who play after 10:00 pm eastern time on Saturdays.