Earlier I was taking the youngest over to a friend's place so they can play outside in the snow, when he asked "Dad, do you think Ndamukong Suh will win the Heisman?".
Agh. Answering a 10-year old kid is a lot different than what I'd tell some smack-talking friends. You have to be honest (or a pretty good liar and I'm not a good liar) when you're answering a kid that age, otherwise they know.
What I said is "He could win it, but I doubt it. It's really hard to win the Heisman Trophy if you're a defensive guy. It's a huge accomplishment that Suh has even been invited to be there. It would be a big wonderful surprise if he wins, but you really can't be disappointed if he doesn't. "
Well.... I was only partially lying. I don't think I'll be disappointed if he doesn't win it, but I will be disappointed if Alabama's Mark Ingram finishes ahead of him. I don't have anything against Ingram, but if I had to vote, here's how I would have voted them:
1. Ndamukong Suh
2. Colt McCoy
3. Toby Gerhart
4. Mark Ingram
5. CJ Spiller
I won't be upset if McCoy wins it because back when I was trying to work out how Nebraska would beat Texas in the Big 12 title game, there was one obvious answer - take Colt McCoy out of the game. People can bag on McCoy all they want for not putting up great numbers, but the fact is, McCoy is the guy that makes the Texas offense go. Take him out and they'd still win the South, but would have not won the Big 12 and they certainly wouldn't be going to the national title game.
Same thing with Toby Gerhart. Gerhart made the Stanford Cardinal go. The guy finished first nationally in rushing yardage with 1,736 yards, first with attempts at 311, and first in rushing touchdowns with 26. He was amazing to watch as he ran over people, and especially enjoyable as he ran over Notre Dame.
Ingram? Take him off the Crimson Tide, and they're still a great team. What bugs me most about Ingram is that his worst game came against Auburn, the Tide's biggest rival. How do you call yourself a Heisman winner when it's the biggest game of the year and you don't rise up against your opponent? (Tide fans might say Auburn isn't the biggest game of the year, instead pointing to the SEC title game or the upcoming national title game. My response would be to ask how much Saban has stolen their soul.) The most damning point against Ingram comes from the Heisman Pundit, who points out that Ingram's 119 per game rushing average would be the fewest by a Heisman-winning running back in the modern era of two-platoon football.
CJ Spiller fills in the last place out of five because he's a phenomenal player, fast as a bullet, and it gives me a chance to remind everyone that a Ndamukong Suh-lead defense held him to 17 yards rushing and six yards receiving in last year's Gator Bowl (although Spiller did have 159 yards in returns).
Let's face the fact that the Heisman Trophy is the most overrated, hyped trophy in sports.... until your guy might win it. Then you're right there, hoping he's the guy the nation wants to reward. With Suh that's especially true, as a win here would be a recognition of just how far the Blackshirts have come in the last two years.