Heisman Trophy winners Desmond Howard (’91) and Charles Woodson (’97) announced tonight (Dec. 4) that the finalists for the 83rd annual Heisman Memorial Trophy are Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson, Stanford running back Bryce Love and Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield. The announcement of the finalists was made on ESPN’s 6:00 PM EST telecast of its Monday Night Countdown show.
The three finalists will be invited to New York City for the Heisman Trophy announcement on Saturday, December 9, which will broadcast live on ESPN at 8:00 PM EST, presented by Nissan North America.
Jackson, a third-year junior, is the returning Heisman winner and a two-time Heisman finalist. He aims to become the first two-time Heisman winner since Archie Griffin in 1974-75. He joins Ty Detmer, Jason White, Matt Leinart, Tim Tebow and Johnny Manziel as Heisman winners who made it back to New York as a finalist. The 6-3, 218-pound Jackson, who hails from Pompano Beach, Fla., guided the Cardinals to an 8-4 record while accumulating 4,932 yards of total offense and 42 total touchdowns. He threw for 3,489 yards and 25 touchdowns through the air and racked up 1,443 yards and 17 scores on the ground to become the first player to pass for over 3,000 yards and rush for over 1,000 yards in two seasons. For his efforts, Jackson was named the ACC’s Player of the Year.
Love, a third-year junior, is Stanford’s fifth Heisman finalist and seeks to join Jim Plunkett as his school’s second Heisman winner. The lightning-quick 5-10, 195-pound true junior from Wake Forest, NC, rushed for 1,973 yard and 17 touchdowns this fall, averaging a stellar 8.32 yards per carry. Despite missing one game due to injury, he was second in the nation in rushing and led the nation with 10 runs of 50 yards or more. The Cardinal finished 9-4 and earned a trip to the Alamo Bowl.
Mayfield, a fifth-year senior, repeats as a finalist after finishing third in the vote last season. He has a chance to become the sixth Sooner Heisman winner and the first Heisman winner to begin his career as a “walk-on” athlete. He’s also one of seven players to finish in the top 5 of the Heisman vote three times, joining Heisman legends Glenn Davis and Doc Blanchard of Army, Doak Walker of SMU, Archie Griffin of Ohio State, Herschel Walker of Georgia and Tim Tebow of Florida. Mayfield, is on pace to break his own NCAA record for passing efficiency with a mark of 203.76. The 6-1, 222-pounder from Austin, Texas, threw for 4,340 yards and 41 touchdowns, with another 310 yards and five scores on the ground while leading the Sooners to a 12-1 record, the Big 12 title and a berth in the College Football Playoff. He finished fourth in the 2015 Heisman balloting.
The Heisman Memorial Trophy electorate, which selects the finalists and the Heisman winner, is comprised of 929 voters, including 870 media members and 58 former Heisman winners. The public at large is granted one overall fan vote, thanks to Heisman’s Premier Partner, Nissan North America.
“It’s a pleasure to welcome these three outstanding players to New York for the Heisman Trophy ceremony,” said Rob Whalen, Executive Director of the Heisman Trophy Trust. “We look forward to recognizing their remarkable individual accomplishments and celebrating the winner of the Heisman Trophy on Saturday night.”
Tickets are still available for the 83rd Annual Heisman Memorial Trophy Dinner on Sunday, December 11 at the New York Marriott Marquis in Times Square. The winner will be presented with his award at this event, where three former Heisman winners will also be recognized: Gary Beban (UCLA, 1967) on the 50th Anniversary of his award, Gino Torretta (Miami (Fla.), 1992) on the 25th Anniversary of his award and Tim Tebow (Florida, 2007) on the 10th anniversary of his award. The Trust will also recognize legendary pro golfer Ernie Els as the 2017 Heisman Humanitarian Award winner for his support of people with autism.
Media looking to obtain credentials for the 2017 Heisman weekend can apply via the Media tab of http://www.heisman.com.