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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Sunday, May 19, 2024
Jonathan Taylor is on a historic pace for a running back in his Junior year.

Jonathan Taylor is on a historic pace for a running back in his Junior year.

Why the Heisman Trophy won't go to a quarterback

For the last few years, the Heisman Trophy has seen quarterbacks dominate the  award. Since 2010, nine of 10 of the winners have been quarterbacks. This year high-profile transfer quarterbacks like Justin Fields and Jalen Hurts, as well as the amazing talent of a certain Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback were dominating Hiesman conversation in the preseason. 

Another year where only quarterbacks are considered for the trophy, and all other 21 positions are left behind. 

One person who showed last weekend that they had a problem with this trend? None other than the University of Wisconsin’s running back Jonathan Taylor. After a monster game where he racked up 186 yards rushing along with four touchdowns, as well as another 29 receiving yards and a receiving touchdown, he showed why he should be considered the best player in college football; and maybe even the best running back in college football history. 

After tying the school record for most touchdowns in a single game with five, he also passed Melvin Gordon in most career rushing yards, and is now in third place behind Wisconsin legends Montee Ball and Ron Dayne. 

However, he is still not getting the attention he deserves nationally. Quarterbacks like Tua Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts are still the favorites as they are also having monster seasons. Tagovailoa, right now, has 23 total passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns, all without any interceptions. Hurts is likewise having a monster season with Heisman Trophy kingmaker and Oklahoma Sooners head coach Lincoln Reilly, with 14 touchdowns through the air, seven touchdowns on the ground, and statistically leading the best scoring offense in the country. Joe Burrow, the LSU Tigers quarterback, has 26 total touchdowns and is lighting up opposing defenses. 

But, let’s consider for a moment Ron Dayne and his infamous 1999 season where he was one of the most undisputed Heisman Trophy winners in college football history. When you compare Dayne’s total yards and touchdowns at this point in the season where Taylor is now, Taylor actually has more total yards and touchdowns than the legendary Dayne. Taylor is on pace for 32 touchdowns and a little over 2,000 total yards, and he has yet to even play an entire game. 

Jonathan Taylor must be near the top of the Hiesman rankings. He could end up, at the end of this season, with the most rushing yards by a running back  ever in college football history. This award isn’t just a quarterback award, and Taylor is doing his absolute best to prove that. If he is not near the top of national Heisman Trophy rankings, the problem lies in the rankings, and not in the spectacular performances of Jonathan Taylor.

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