Derrick Henry Makes Big Jump Up Heisman Lists
Derrick Henry wasn't just running through the LSU defense on Saturday night. He was also climbing up Heisman Trophy watch lists.
In a matchup featuring the two best running backs in the SEC, it was the Alabama junior that snatched the spotlight with 210 rushing yards and three touchdowns against 2nd-ranked LSU. His incredible effort grabbed the attention of college football analysts and shook up the Heisman race heading into the last few weeks of the season.
The most significant change came from oddsmakers. Prior to LSU, Henry was on the periphery of the Heisman conversation at 14-1, which was fifth best. Now, he's nearly the favorite. According to Sportsbook, Fournette's odds now sit at 3-2 while Henry jumped to 2-1.
Those two players comfortably ahead Ezekiel Elliot (6-1), Corey Coleman (7-1), and Deshaun Watson (7-1).
The odds are even better on Bovada, where Henry has now become the favorite to win the prestigious award.
It's not just oddsmakers that feel Henry is a frontrunner. Sports Illustrated the SEC's second-leading rusher second on its list (ahead of Fournette), while ESPN had this to say.
Possibly the biggest argument for Henry is that he's saved his best performances for the biggest stages. This stat tells you everything you need to know about how important he's been to the Alabama offense.
To get an idea of how Henry's season compares to Alabama's only Heisman winner, Mark Ingram, here are the stats through nine games.
Mark Ingram 2009 - 175 carries/1,148 yards/8TD
Derrick Henry 2015 - 218 carries/1,254 yards/17TD
Henry downplayed the Heisman race when asked about what the LSU performance said to college football on Saturday night.
"I'm not really worried about the Heisman," Henry told the media. "I'm saying that we came out and played. We came out and competed, and we beat a great team as a whole."
Henry currently ranks 6th in the nation in rushing yards and is tied for first in rushing touchdowns. He will have another opportunity to add to his incredible season on Saturday against Mississippi State.