The 2016 Heisman Trophy odds board has seen some movement over the summer.
Back in February, Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson opened as the favorite at +300 (wager $100 to win $300) at sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark, followed by LSU running back Leonard Fournette and Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey, both at +400. Everyone else on the board was getting at least +1000.
Now, with three weeks to go before opening weekend, Fournette leads the betting at +400, followed by Watson at +450 and McCaffrey at +550. And everybody else is getting at least +1200 on those college football betting lines.
Playing in big games, making big plays in those big games and winning those games can mean a ton when it comes to winning the Heisman Trophy. But little of it matters if nobody, especially Heisman voters, sees it.
For instance, McCaffrey gets a huge stage on which to strut when his Cardinal visit the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Oct. 15 for a Saturday prime-time outing that should get huge television ratings. Just think what 200 yards, a couple of touchdowns and a Stanford victory that night would mean to his Heisman Trophy chances.
But will McCaffrey, playing all his other games in Western time zones, suffer from a time-based, anti-West Coast bias? McCaffrey set a new NCAA record for all-purpose yards last year but finished second in the Heisman Trophy voting behind Derrick Henry, a running back from the Central time zone.
This year, the Cardinal’s game against USC starts at 8 p.m. ET, and the game against Washington on a Friday night in Seattle starts at 9 p.m. ET—as does the Pac-12 Championship Game. And just one of the last 10 Heisman Trophy winners has come from the western part of the country: Marcus Mariota of the Oregon Ducks in 2014.
Meanwhile, Fournette and his Tigers open this season in interesting fashion, as they head north to take on the Wisconsin Badgers at Lambeau Field in Green Bay. With a 3:30 p.m. ET start on Sept. 3, that game should get most of the national football audience. Then in November LSU hosts what might be the game of the year in the SEC, against Alabama at Death Valley. So Fournette gets at least a couple of chances to shine under the national spotlight.
Actually, Watson might get the short end of the stick when it comes to exposure. The Tigers’ only really big game this season comes Oct. 29 at Florida State. Other than that, while they play Auburn on opening weekend and have a couple of ACC weeknight games, none will garner anywhere near the interest Stanford-Notre Dame or even LSU-Wisconsin will this season.
Florida State running back Dalvin Cook and Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett head up the second tier of betting on the updated Heisman Trophy odds, both at +1200. Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield, fourth in the voting last year, comes next at +1400, followed by quarterbacks Chad Kelly of Ole Miss and Josh Rosen of UCLA, plus Georgia running back Nick Chubb, all at +1600.
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Source: Bleacher Report -SEC Football