Yes, it’s only February but that doesn’t mean it’s too early to have a look at the betting odds to win the 2020 Heisman Trophy as college football’s best player. We now know who has declared for the NFL draft and most of the transfers have gone through, making it a good time to find some value on the odds board.
To no surprise, this year’s list of Heisman candidates is chock-full of quarterbacks with just a few running backs thrown in the mix. Despite Ohio State defensive end Chase Young’s fourth-place finish last year, no defensive players currently crack the Top 25.
The 2020 favorites begin with two quarterbacks who will lead two of the most prominent programs in the nation: Justin Fields and Trevor Lawrence. Both have current odds of +400, according to the SuperBook at Westgate Las Vegas (as of Feb. 24, 2020).
Fields, last year’s third-place finisher in the Heisman race, threw for 3,272 yards with a 41:3 touchdown-to-interception ratio in 2019, leading the Buckeyes to a 13-1 record — their only loss coming to Clemson in the CFP semifinals.
Lawrence put up very impressive numbers last season as well, throwing for 3,665 yards with a 36:8 touchdown-to-interception ratio, but finished seventh in the Heisman voting, partially due to a weak schedule in 2019. The Tigers rolled through ACC play before sneaking past the Buckeyes in the national semifinal and losing to LSU in the title game.
Quarterbacks Spencer Rattler (Oklahoma), Sam Ehlinger (Texas), and Jamie Newman (Georgia) round out the Top 5 favorites before running backs Travis Etienne (Clemson) and Chuba Hubbard (Oklahoma State) appear on the odds board at +2,000.
Those looking for longshot quarterbacks might want to look at Tua Tagovailoa replacement Mac Jones at +2,500 and LSU pivot Myles Brennan at +3,000.
Odds to win 2020 Heisman Trophy
|PLAYER||SCHOOL||ODDS TO WIN HEISMAN TROPHY|
|Justin Fields||Ohio State||+400|
|Chuba Hubbard||Oklahoma State||+2,000|
|Ian Book||Notre Dame||+2,000|
|Sam Howell||North Carolina||+3,000|
|Sean Clifford||Penn State||+4,000|
|Spencer Sanders||Oklahoma State||+4,000|
|Kellon Mond||Texas A&M||+5,000|
|Master Teague III||Ohio State||+6,000|
|Brock Purdy||Iowa State||+6,000|
Heisman Trophy Betting Trends
Here are a few trends to keep in mind before placing a bet on college football’s biggest individual award.
Quarterbacks have dominated this award over the last 20 years with 17 Heisman winners playing under center. Only one non-skill position player has ever won this prestigious trophy (Charles Woodson in 1997) and the last wide receiver to take home the award was Desmond Howard in 1990.
The Heisman trophy winner usually comes from a team with a shot at winning the national title. Since 2000, 13 Heisman trophy winners have played for teams that made it to the national championship game (including Reggie Bush who later had his trophy vacated for breaking NCAA rules). If you’re handicapping the Heisman you might want to consider looking at which teams have the best chance of winning the title on the NCAA futures odds board.
Historically seniors dominated this award but even though Joe Burrow won the Heisman in 2019, he is one of only two seniors to win the Heisman in the last 13 years. Over that span, two freshmen, four sophomores, and five juniors have claimed the prize.
Heisman Trophy History
A quick look at recent Heisman trophy winners, their schools, and the position they played.
|HEISMAN TROPHY WINNER||SCHOOL||YEAR|
|Jameis Winston||Florida State||2013|
|Johnny Manziel||Texas A&M||2012|
|Robert Griffin III||Baylor||2011|
|Mark Ingram JR||Alabama||2009|
|Troy Smith||Ohio State||2006|
|Chris Weinke||Florida State||2000|