By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
New York, New York – Derrick Henry has bulldozed his way to the Heisman Trophy ceremony. Henry, who had the most yards in the Southeastern Conference, defeated Stanford Cardinal’s Christian McCaffrey and Clemson Tigers’ Deshaun Watson.
Henry is the second Alabama Crimson Tide player to win the award in its historic history. His Heisman selection is the first since Mark Ingram in 2009. He’s the 18th Junior to win the award, and won with 1,832 total points, including 378 first-place votes.
It is also the first running back to win the award since Ingram’s night six-years ago. It’s been a quarterback dominate award, and they’ve won the past five awards.
He’s been the workhorse for the SEC’s best team. He’s the nation’s leading rusher with 1,986 yards, which he broke Herschel Walker’s previous record.
In the past eight games, he’s carried the ball 32 times in a game. The past seven Heisman winners have averaged 2,023 yards.
His yardage is the most since Ron Dayne when he had 2,034 yards in 1999 with the Wisconsin Badgers. His touchdowns, 23, were the most since Ricky Williams had in 1998 with the Texas Longhorns.
The all-everything McCaffrey finished second, as he finished with 1,539 points. He had 290 first place votes and 246 second-place votes, and he beat out Henry in the Far West with 333 points.
It’s the fourth player from Stanford to get runner-up since 2009. That history began with Toby Gerhardt, then back-to-back years with Andrew Luck, and they’re the only team in Heisman history to have a runner-up in three straight years.
McCaffrey had 3,496 all=purpose yards, and had 461 yards in last Saturday’s Pac-12 Championship game against the USC Trojans at Levi’s Stadium. He had 1,847 rushing yards, along with 1,109 on returns and 540 receiving yards.
The thing that hurt him is that he struggled in two games this season. He had just 171 yards in the season opener game against the Northwestern Wildcats in Illinois. He had just 94-yards against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
Deshaun Watson, who is the quarterback with the Clemson Tigers, the No. 1 ranked team in the land, finished third. The sophomore quarterback, whose in his first-year as the Tigers quarterback, had statistics below the norm for a Heisman worthy signal-caller.
Watson finished with 1,165 total points, and had 240 second-place and 241 third-place votes. He fell off with just 148 first-place votes. In the Mid-Atlantic region, he finished in second place, behind Henry, while finishing in third place for the Northeast, South, Southwest, Midwest, and Far West.
He also did not have as many Heisman moments in his season, like Henry and McCaffrey. Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney was reluctant to let Watson spread his wings early on.
He had 4,399 total offense and 41 total touchdowns on the season. The past five quarterbacks have averaged 4,791 yards and 49 touchdowns.
While his stats didn’t live up to the Heisman winners of the past, he’s the only Power 5 player to be in the Top 11 in the passing efficiency at 159.6 and in the Top 10 of total offense with 338.4 yards per game.
He was also the first Heisman candidate to be invited to New York City in school history. The previous high was sixth-place finishes by several players.