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Zach Pekale | NCAA.com | December 24, 2020

Trevor Lawrence, Mac Jones headline 2020 Heisman Trophy finalists

College Football Playoff preview: Ohio State vs. Clemson

The four finalists for the 2020 Heisman Memorial Trophy were announced on Thursday, Dec. 24. Voting closed on December 21 and is based solely on the on-field performances of each player from college football's regular season through conference championship games.

This season's recipient will be announced during the Heisman Trophy Ceremony on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021. The event is being held virtually due to COVID-19.

MORE: Heisman Trophy winners, runners-up since 1935

Here are the 2020 finalists:

2020 Heisman Trophy Finalists
NAME SCHOOL POSITION CLASS
Mac Jones Alabama QB Redshirt junior
Trevor Lawrence Clemson QB Junior
Kyle Trask Florida QB Redshirt senior
DeVonta Smith Alabama WR Senior

Below is a deeper look at each of this year's finalists.

Mac Jones — Alabama QB

Alabama Athletics Alabama QB Mac Jones Mac Jones can become the first Alabama quarterback to win the Heisman Trophy.

Jones was preparing for his third career start around this time last year. It just goes to show how much things can change in a year. Alabama lost Tua Tagovailoa to the NFL and didn't really miss a beat offensively once Jones became the starting quarterback. The redshirt junior passed for 3,795 yards and 32 touchdowns to just four interceptions in 11 games. He also topped the FBS in completion percentage (76.5) while leading Alabama to an SEC title and a College Football Playoff berth. The Tide have two Heisman Trophy winners, though both were running backs — Mark Ingram (2009) and Derrick Henry (2015). But after Jones' first full season under center, the record books in Tuscaloosa might need re-writing.

Trevor Lawrence — Clemson QB

Clemson Athletics Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence Trevor Lawrence could become Clemson's first-ever Heisman Trophy recipient.

Lawrence has accomplished a lot in two-plus years at Clemson. He's a national champion with three appearances at the College Football Playoff and holds a 34-1 record as a starter. There's really one major box left unchecked and that's the Heisman Trophy. Clemson has never had a Heisman recipient and Lawrence is a finalist for the first time in his career. The junior threw for 2,753 yards and 22 passing touchdowns against four interceptions in nine games while adding seven rushing touchdowns. He missed two games due to COVID-19, which would mean he'd be the first winner to miss a game since Charlie Ward in 1993.

Kyle Trask — Florida QB

Florida Athletics Florida QB Kyle Trask Kyle Trask could become the fourth Florida QB to win the Heisman Trophy.

There's something about Florida quarterbacks and the Heisman Trophy. Trask has a chance to be the fourth signal-caller in program history to take home college football's most prestigious piece of hardware for an individual. The redshirt senior led the FBS in passing yards (4,125) and passing touchdowns (43) in his first full season as a starter, leading the Gators to the SEC Championship Game. For parts of this season, Trask's numbers were on par with the record-setting campaign that 2019 Heisman winner Joe Burrow put together. We'll find out on January 5 if Trask will join the ranks of Steve Spurrier, Danny Wuerffel and Tim Tebow as part of Florida's Heisman history.

DeVonta Smith — Alabama WR

Alabama Athletics Alabama WR DeVonta Smith Alabama's DeVonta Smith would be just the fourth wide receiver to win the Heisman Trophy.

Only three wide receivers have ever walked away with the Heisman Trophy and the last was Desmond Howard in 1991. Smith is just the fourth finalist among wideouts since Howard's win. Then again, not many receivers — including past winners and finalists — have produced quite like Smith has this season. The senior led the FBS in receptions (98) and receiving yards (1,511), hauling in 17 touchdowns in 11 games. By comparison, Howard scored 21 total touchdowns to Smith's 19 while the Tide's top wideout amassed over 600 more total yards than Howard, playing in one fewer game. One thing that could hurt Smith's chances is that Mac Jones is also a finalist. But if the votes don't get split among the Tide, Smith could have a shot at joining elite company.

Heisman Trophy: All-time winners

YEAR WINNER
1935 Jay Berwanger - RB,
Chicago
1936 Larry Kelley - TE,
Yale
1937 Clinton Frank - HB,
Yale
1938 Davey O’Brien - QB,
TCU
1939 Nile Kinnick - RB,
Iowa
1940 Tom Harmon - RB,
Michigan
1941 Bruce Smith - RB,
Minnesota
1942 Frank Sinkwich - RB,
Georgia
1943 Angelo Bertelli - QB,
Notre Dame
1944 Les Horvath - HB,
Ohio State
1945 Doc Blanchard - FB,
Army
1946 Glenn Davis - RB,
Army
1947 John Lujack - QB,
Notre Dame
1948 Doak Walker - RB,
SMU
1949 Leon Hart - TE,
Notre Dame
1950 Vic Janowicz - RB,
Ohio State
1951 Dick Kazmaier - RB,
Princeton
1952 Billy Vessels - RB,
Oklahoma
1953 John Lattner - RB,
Notre Dame
1954 Alan Ameche - FB,
Wisconsin
1955 Howard Cassady - RB,
Ohio State
1956 Paul Hornung - QB,
Notre Dame
1957 John David Crow - RB,
Texas A&M
1958 Pete Dawkins - RB,
Army
1959 Billy Cannon - RB,
LSU
1960 Joe Bellino - RB,
Navy
1961 Ernie Davis - RB,
Syracuse
1962 Terry Baker - QB,
Oregon State
1963 Roger Staubach - QB,
Navy
1964 John Huarte - QB,
Notre Dame
1965 Mike Garrett - RB,
Southern Cal
1966 Steve Spurrier - QB,
Florida
1967 Gary Beban - QB,
UCLA
1968 O.J. Simpson - RB,
Southern Cal
1969 Steve Owens - RB,
Oklahoma
1970 Jim Plunkett - QB,
Stanford
1971 Pat Sullivan - QB,
Auburn
1972 Johnny Rodgers - WR,
Nebraska
1973 John Cappelletti - RB,
Penn State
1974 Archie Griffin - RB,
Ohio State
1975 Archie Griffin - RB,
Ohio State
1976 Tony Dorsett - RB,
Pittsburgh
1977 Earl Campbell - RB,
Texas
1978 Billy Sims - RB,
Oklahoma
1979 Charles White - RB,
Southern Cal
1980 George Rogers - RB,
South Carolina
1981 Marcus Allen - RB,
Southern Cal
1982 Herschel Walker - RB,
Georgia
1983 Mike Rozier - RB,
Nebraska
1984 Doug Flutie - QB,
Boston College
1985 Bo Jackson - RB,
Auburn
1986 Vinny Testaverde - QB,
Miami (Fla.)
1987 Tim Brown - WR,
Notre Dame
1988 Barry Sanders - RB,
Oklahoma State
1989 Andre Ware - QB,
Houston
1990 Ty Detmer - QB,
Brigham Young
1991 Desmond Howard - WR,
Michigan
1992 Gino Torretta - QB,
Miami (Fla.)
1993 Charlie Ward - QB,
Florida State
1994 Rashaan Salaam - RB,
Colorado
1995 Eddie George - RB,
Ohio State
1996 Danny Wuerffel - QB,
Florida
1997 Charles Woodson - CB,
Michigan
1998 Ricky Williams - RB,
Texas
1999 Ron Dayne - RB,
Wisconsin
2000 Chris Weinke - QB,
Florida State
2001 Eric Crouch - QB,
Nebraska
2002 Carson Palmer - QB,
Southern Cal
2003 Jason White - QB,
Oklahoma
2004 Matt Leinart - QB,
Southern Cal
2005 Reggie Bush - RB,
Southern Cal*
2006 Troy Smith - QB,
Ohio State
2007 Tim Tebow - QB,
Florida
2008 Sam Bradford - QB,
Oklahoma
2009 Mark Ingram - RB,
Alabama
2010 Cam Newton - QB,
Auburn
2011 Robert Griffin III - QB,
Baylor
2012 Johnny Manziel - QB,
Texas A&M
2013 Jameis Winston - QB,
Florida State
2014 Marcus Mariota - QB,
Oregon
2015 Derrick Henry - RB,
Alabama
2016 Lamar Jackson - QB,
Louisville
2017 Baker Mayfield - QB,
Oklahoma
2018 Kyler Murray - QB,
Oklahoma
2019 Joe Burrow - QB, LSU

* Vacated

 

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