Another statue to be erected in Heisman park?


Sam Bradford is the latest addition to Norman’s Heisman Park, but could another statue join the company of Bradford and Oklahoma’s four other Heisman winners at the end of the season?

The Sooners are not lacking star power, and boast a deadly QB-WR combo that has caught the attention of Mr. Phil Steele.

If you are unfamiliar with Steele, he puts together a college football preview magazine every season, and is quite accurate. He had Alabama winning the National Championship last year over the Sooners. While Oklahoma collapsed at the end of the season, Steele has predicted OU to get back to the BCS title game, however, he has them losing to Florida State.

Sooner fans may raise their eyebrow at that, but remember, this is all based off the research he does 24/7/365. His magazine is loaded with quality information, and OU losing in a national championship is not too far-fetched in Norman.

Anyway, Steele also ranks the top players in the country, who he thinks could win the Heisman.

The first  guy on the list is USC’s Matt Barkley, who decided to come back and try and win a national championship Southern Cal’s first year back from their two-year bowl ban. Next on the list, though, is everyone’s favorite Sooner gunslinger. Landry Jones.

The ‘Stache is one Steele’s favorites, but he is not the lone Sooner on the list. Listed as a contender is top Oklahoma wideout Kenny Stills.

The tandem are going to light up the scoreboard this season, but do they really have what it takes to bring home the Heisman trophy?

Landry Jones

What Jones Has Going For Him: Before you call in to the Sports Animal and beg for Drew Allen to start over Landry Jones, look at what Stache has done while wearing a Sooner jersey. He has shattered passing record after passing record, yet to lose to Texas as a starter, and is perfect in bowl games.

His stats are phenomenal for a kid who had to follow up Sam Bradford. Which oddly is the reason why not a lot of people like Jones. He followed Sam Bradford.

Jones has one more season to redeem himself. He has a team capable of winning a title, but his decision-making has been horrible and maybe he does get flustered on the road.

However, the offense was never the same after Ryan Broyles was sidelined. And now that the Sooners have a spring under them without the best wide receiver in NCAA history, expect Jones to put up stupid numbers. He has plenty of targets to toss the ball.

What Jones Has Going Against Him: There are a few requirements to be a Heisman winner nowadays. Unless you’re Robert Griffin III, your team has to be competing for a national championship. You have to have a “Heisman moment.” And your numbers have to be gaudy. Jones will probably have gaudy stats down, but with OU’s schedule, Jones’ bid for a Heisman could suffer from some tough road games. Also, you can’t create or expect a Heisman moment. It just happens.

Though, the biggest factor is how much Stoops relies on the Belldozer package in the redzone. That takes away touchdowns from Landry, but if the Sooners are scoring, I don’t think he could care less about an individual award. Jones will do whatever it takes to win, and if that means allowing Blake Bell to walk in to the endzone from five-yards out, then so be it.

Biggest position competition: Matt Barkley, Southern Cal. EJ Manuel, Florida State. Denard Robinson, Michigan.

Kenny Stills

What Stills Has Going For Him: With Broyles out of the picture, undoubtedly, Stills will be Jones’ top receiver. With a great class of receivers, that may change, but Stills will be the key target. He struggled a bit when Broyles went down, but Kenny is a winner. He will embrace his role as top dog of the wideouts, and showcase his talents this fall.

Last year he had the perfect Heisman moment when he went up and grabbed a touchdown in the endzone over Florida State’s Greg Reid, but that was last season. Maybe Stills has some more Sooner Magic in him, but it will be hard to top that kind of moment.

Also, Stills’ numbers may benefit if he is returning punts. He didn’t do great last season, but with two years under his belt and not serving as an understudy to Ryan Broyles, maybe Kenny can get his act together and take a few to the house.

What Stills Has Going Against Him: He’s a receiver. Plain and simple, receivers don’t win this award, because voters look to the guy who is putting the ball in the air.

I see why Steele put him on the list, because Kenny is one of the best returning receivers in 2012. However, unless he really emerges this season, I couldn’t see him beating out a Barkley or Jones.

While he may be the top target, Landry will multiple options, and that may cause Stills’ numbers to dip.

Also, can Kenny stay out of trouble? He seems like a genuinely good kid, but even good kids can make dumb mistakes. Hopefully, Stills embraces his role as an older guy and can avoid the wrath of Stoops this year.

Biggest position competition: Robert Woods, USC. Sammy Watkins, Clemson. Marquess Wilson, Washington State.