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Just about every major sport will have individual awards handed out toward the end of the season, but few of them are as prestigious and well-known as the Heisman Trophy in college football. The Heisman ceremony is a fun night to learn the stories of the best college football players of the year, with many of the previous winners in attendance.
As we’ve seen with numerous examples over the years, winning a Heisman Trophy is not an indicator of NFL success, but that’s not what the award is about. The Heisman celebrates accomplishments for that season, and the winners are remembered forever.
Because there is so much focus on the Heisman Trophy, many sportsbooks will offer odds throughout the season and even in the offseason on the next winner. In this guide, we will take you through the latest Heisman odds, tips for betting on the Heisman Trophy and more.
Heisman Trophy winner odds
Top Heisman contenders for 2021
Below are many of the main Heisman candidates to keep an eye on throughout the 2021 college football season.
- QB Matt Corral (Ole Miss): Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin is known for his expertise on the offensive side of the ball, and Corral has been one of the main beneficiaries. With a passing attack that is among the best in the sport, he’s got a high ceiling in 2021.
- QB Bryce Young (Alabama): Alabama put a bigger emphasis on the passing game in recent years. With Young as the next Alabama quarterback, he should be in for a big season on a team that sets the standard in college football.
- QB Spencer Rattler (Oklahoma): Oklahoma is known for its prolific passing game that puts up a ton of points under head coach Lincoln Riley. Sooners quarterbacks have been at or near the top of the Heisman voting plenty of times over the last few years, so Rattler is in an advantageous spot.
- QB Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati): Winning the Heisman Trophy at a Group of Five school is tough to do, but if Cincinnati continues to play well throughout the regular season, Ridder could find himself among the Heisman finalists. The odds are certainly stacked against him to win it coming from outside the power conferences, however.
- QB Malik Willis (Liberty): One of the lesser-known candidates, Willis does not play in a conference at Liberty, so it might be tough for him to gain traction among Heisman voters. Still, he is a player to watch down the stretch in a solid offense run by head coach Hugh Freeze, and he has the potential to be a finalist. Like Ridder, this will be tough to do for a team not always on the national stage.
- QB CJ Stroud (Ohio State): The Buckeyes might have the best stable of pass catchers in all of college football, and that’s great news for a freshman quarterback who has a real shot at winning the Heisman Trophy. Ohio State has been the class of the Big Ten for years, and the Buckeyes are among the most talked about teams in the country.
- QB Sam Howell (North Carolina): Howell leads one of the best offenses in college football despite losing several key playmakers from the year before. The Tar Heels should continue to put up a ton of points each week, adding to Howell’s stat total.
- QB JT Daniels (Georgia): Quarterback was an issue for Georgia last season until JT Daniels was cleared to play. Now in his first full season, Daniels could lead the Bulldogs to greater heights as a program. If he can do that, he should receive plenty of Heisman consideration.
- RB TreVeyon Henderson (Ohio State): In addition to a prolific passing game, the Buckeyes can make plenty of plays in the running game with Henderson. Ohio State should keep the scoreboard operators busy this season with this offense.
- RB CJ Verdell (Oregon): Verdell played a big role in Oregon’s win over Ohio State earlier this season, and playing well in the biggest games of the year is crucial for Heisman consideration. The Ducks have developed into a team of note in the Pac-12, and Verdell could be among the candidates late in the regular season.
Past Heisman winners
Below are the 10 most recent Heisman Trophy winners:
|2020||DeVonta Smith||Alabama||Wide Receiver|
|2015||Derrick Henry||Alabama||Running Back|
|2013||Jameis Winston||Florida State||Quarterback|
|2012||Johnny Manziel||Texas A&M||Quarterback|
|2011||Robert Griffin III||Baylor||Quarterback|
Last year’s Heisman voting results
Below is how the 2020 Heisman shook out, sorted by number of points:
- Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith: 1,856
- Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence: 1,187
- Alabama quarterback Mac Jones: 1,130
- Florida quarterback Kyle Trask: 737
- Alabama running back Najee Harris: 216
- Iowa State running back Breece Hall: 64
- Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields: 48
- BYU quarterback Zach Wilson: 42
- Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book: 38
- Florida tight end Kyle Pitts: 24
Heisman Trophy voting trends
Looking over the past 10 years, there are certainly some trends to note as you take a look at the Heisman Trophy betting market. As you might expect given their overall importance, quarterbacks have dominated the Heisman Trophy voting. A quarterback has won the award eight times in the last decade of winners. Additionally, a defensive player has not won the Heisman since Michigan defensive back Charles Woodson in 1997, though he also was a factor as a wide receiver and returner in the special teams game.
This is also not a huge surprise, but upperclassmen generally take home the Heisman Trophy. Over the last 10 years, seven Heisman winners have been either juniors or seniors, along with one sophomore and two freshmen.
Another note regarding the previous 10 years of Heisman Trophy winners is how important college football brand recognition can be. It takes an incredibly special season for a player on a lesser-known team or from a smaller conference to win the award. The team generally has to be extremely relevant down the stretch of the regular season, which usually eliminates the best players from less successful teams.
One final interesting item to note is how many recent Heisman winners changed teams during their college football careers. With transfers much more prevalent in the sport, there was a three-year stretch from 2017-19 when quarterbacks won the Heisman Trophy with a team different from the one where they began their college football careers.
Where to bet on Heisman futures
If you are looking to place a wager on the Heisman Trophy, you’ll want to select one of the legal Ohio mobile betting apps. This will provide a much safer, more convenient and efficient sports betting experience. When you use an offshore sportsbook or go through a bookie, there are no guarantees that such a sportsbook or individual won’t simply decide to not pay you. That is not the case at legal US sportsbooks.
It is up to personal preference regarding which regulated sportsbook you’d like to choose, but there are plenty of quality options that will offer odds on just about anything you could imagine, including Heisman Trophy odds. Books like DraftKings Sportsbook in Ohio and FanDuel Sportsbook are great options, with apps that make for a convenient experience for bettors.
Additionally, if you register at multiple books, you can shop for the best sports odds for any bets you want to place. Oddsmakers at various books will have similar lines, but they will can still vary, and those differences can add up.
Who votes on the Heisman Trophy?
All previous Heisman winners have a vote, as do 870 media members and one vote that goes to the fans.
When is the Heisman Trophy awarded?
The Heisman Trophy ceremony typically takes place in early December the week following the conference championship weekend and on the same day as the annual Army-Navy game. The 2021 Heisman Trophy ceremony will take place on Dec. 11 at 8 p.m. ET, with ESPN carrying the broadcast.
Have any players on Ohio teams won the Heisman?
The Ohio State Buckeyes have one of the biggest brands in all of college football, and they are tied for the most Heisman Trophy winners ever. An Ohio State player has won the award seven times, tied with the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and Oklahoma Sooners.
Ohio State winners stretch from Les Horvath in 1944 to Troy Smith in 2006. Buckeye Archie Griffin is the only two-time Heisman winner, claiming the trophy in the 1975 and 1976 seasons. Here are all the Buckeyes to win the Heisman Trophy:
- Troy Smith (quarterback) — 2006
- Eddie George (running back) — 1995
- Archie Griffin (running back) — 1976, 1975
- Howard Cassady (running back) — 1955
- Vic Janowicz (running back) — 1950
- Les Horvath (halfback) — 1944
Find the latest odds on Ohio State Football games here.
Other college football futures bets
While the individual player futures market is highlighted by the Heisman Trophy, sportsbooks will offer a variety of team futures for college football betting, as well. Here are some of the non-Heisman futures bets many sportsbooks will offer:
- National champion: One of the most popular futures bets is predicting the next title winner. This has become an easier bet to win in recent years as the sport has been dominated by a select group of elite teams, but with so many options and so much that can happen, it’s still difficult to win consistently, which is why, depending on when you bet, the payout can be quite high.
- Conference champion: Bettors can wager on who will win a particular conference, which often is a fun race down the stretch.
- Division champion: Some conferences have multiple divisions, with futures bets available for each.
- To make the playoffs: If you are not as confident in wagering on the national champion, you can bet on whether a team will qualify for the College Football Playoff.
- Win totals: Oddsmakers will set a specific win total for just about every team, and you can bet on whether you think a team will win more or less than the projected total. This is a good benchmark for fans to have an idea of where their favorite teams stand.
Odds are often available during the offseason, allowing fans a look at what the oddsmakers expect heading into the year. The numbers will fluctuate throughout the offseason and during the season based on recent performances, news, public betting action and more.