Few futures markets offer up the volatility and the intrigue of the Heisman. Favorites don’t often play like favorites, contenders often emerge from nowhere, and the voting — through its robust, imperfect process — creates a landscape that constantly shifts.
It’s just about the halfway mark of the college football season, and we’re finally starting to gain some clarity in the Heisman Trophy race.
A quarterback has won the Heisman eight of the last 10 years, with Bryce Young taking home the prestigious award in 2021.
Young could very well do it again, but he’ll have to outplay an impressive field currently led by C.J. Stroud and Caleb Williams to repeat.
Here’s a look at the 2022-23 Heisman Trophy picture.
Heisman Trophy Odds
All NCAAF odds are current as of Tuesday, Oct. 4 at 1:30 p.m. ET and courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook.
- C.J. Stroud, QB, Ohio State (+150)
- Caleb Williams, QB, USC (+500)
- Bryce Young, QB, Alabama (+1000)
- Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee (+1400)
- Adrian Martinez, QB, Kansas State (+1600)
- Blake Corum, RB, Michigan (+1800)
- Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, Alabama (+2000)
- Stetson Bennett IV, QB, Georgia (+2000)
- DJ Uiagalelei, QB, Clemson (+2500)
Dorian Thompson-Robinson, QB, UCLA (+3000)
- Drake Maye, QB, North Carolina (+3000)
- Miyan Williams, RB, Ohio State (+3000)
- Sam Hartman, QB, Wake Forest (+4000)
- Spencer Sanders, QB, Oklahoma State (+4000)
- Jalon Daniels, QB, Kansas (+4000)
- Will Anderson Jr., OLB, Alabama (+5000)
- Cameron Rising, QB, Utah (+5000)
- Bo Nix, QB, Oregon (+8000)
- Duece Vaughn, RB, Kansas State (+8000)
- Taulia Tagovailoa, QB, Maryland (+8000)
- Michael Penix Jr., QB, Washington (+10000)
- Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida (+10000)
- Max Duggan, QB, TCU (+10000)
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Heisman Trophy Favorites
C.J. Stroud (+150)
Wager: 1 Unit
It might have been Stroud’s worst game of the season, and yet, his lead in the Heisman race only extended.
Stroud completed just 13 of his 22 passes for 154 yards and two touchdowns but threw his third interception of the season in a 49-10 win over Rutgers.
Granted, he wasn’t asked to do much as Ohio State ran the ball for almost 7.5 yards per carry and took a 28-7 lead into the half.
It has been a flawless start to the conference slate for the Buckeyes, winning their two conference games by 31 and 39 points, respectively.
The offense looks virtually unstoppable, even if Stroud doesn’t play a perfect game - which if he has a couple more “bad" outings - could hurt him with voters.
Even so, Stroud has put himself a step above the rest in the Heisman race. He has racked up 1,376 passing yards, is third in the nation in passing touchdowns with 18, and his 93.7 QBR is second in the NCAA.
This could be the last chance to get Stroud at plus-money, especially with a trip to Michigan State on tap this week. The Spartans allow 275 passing yards per game, the second-most in the Big Ten.
Caleb Williams (+500)
Wager: 1 Unit
Williams and USC are back on track after a tough outing against Oregon State a couple of weeks ago.
The Trojans overpowered Arizona State in a 42-25 win. Williams was virtually unstoppable, completing 73% of his passes for 348 yards and three touchdowns, adding another 44 yards and a score with his legs.
As long as USC stays undefeated, and Williams continues to efficiently lead the offense, he’s going to be a factor in the Heisman race.
The preseason hype around USC and Williams was substantial, and until this point, he hasn’t blinked.
Williams ranks eighth in the nation with an 85.8 QBR and has completed 67.3% of his passes, racked up 1,546 total yards, and has scored 15 total touchdowns this season.
He needed a bounce-back week after a tough outing against Oregon State, and he got exactly that.
With a Young injury, Williams moved back into second in the Heisman odds.
He should have another chance to pad his stats when the Trojans host Washington State - the second-worst passing defense in the Pac-12 - this week.
Heisman Trophy Contenders
Bryce Young (+1000)
Wager: 1 Unit
Young scored two touchdowns in the first quarter - a 47-yard pass and an eight-yard run - before leaving the game with a shoulder injury. Backup quarterback Jalen Milroe came in and Alabama held off No. 20 ranked Arkansas to stay undefeated.
The previously top-ranked Georgia Bulldogs struggled with Missouri and the Tide are back to No. 1 in the AP Poll.
Head coach Nick Saban says Young is day-to-day with an AC sprain in his shoulder and is hopeful he’ll be fine for next week’s matchup with Texas A&M.
Young fell behind Williams and Stroud, but don’t count him out yet.
This +1000 number is far too long for the defending Heisman Trophy winner with plenty of big-time football left. Especially if he gives it a go and is anywhere near 100% against Texas A&M this week.
Hendon Hooker (+1400)
Wager: 1 Unit
An incredible performance from Hendon Hooker in a win over Florida two weeks ago saw his odds drop from the 50-1 range all the way down to +1400, giving him the fourth-shortest odds.
Hooker was essentially perfect in the win, posting a season-high 78.6% completion percentage and 349 passing yards. Not only did he throw for two touchdowns, but he added another on the ground and led the Volunteers in rushing with 112 yards.
After a bye last week, Tennesse will head on the road to No. 25 LSU - a defense that has been untested to this point in the season.
Then, the Volunteers host Alabama, which is a game that could decide his fate in the Heisman race.
If Tennessee can move the ball effectively against Alabama and/or pull off the upset, Hooker will continue his climb up the odds board and be among the favorites to take home the Heisman Trophy.
Heisman Trophy Sleepers
Dorian Thompson-Robinson (+3000)
Wager: 0.5 Unit
Dorian Thompson-Robinson and UCLA just put the country on notice with an impressive 40-32 win over Washington.
Washington and Michael Penix Jr. had a ton of buzz heading in, and with the win, DTR has absorbed that hype - and more - to kickstart his own Heisman campaign.
DTR completed 73% of his passes for 315 yards and three touchdowns and added another 53 yards and a score on the ground.
The fifth-year senior has taken a huge step forward this season, completing 74.3% of his passes for 1,211 yards and 11 touchdowns. He’s been a better runner than passer throughout his career and has 223 yards and three scores on the ground in 2022.
Thompson-Robinson will lead the way against a stingy Utah defense this week. It’ll be the biggest test of the year for the Bruins’ offense.
If UCLA wins and Thompson-Robinson produces another lights-out performance, he’s going to take a ton of momentum into the Bruins’ bye week.
Spencer Sanders (+5000)
Wager: 0.5 Unit
Spencer Sanders has been the Oklahoma State starter for the last four seasons, and for the most part, has functioned mostly as a game manager.
After a successful stat-padding, non-conference campaign, Sanders and Oklahoma State notched a 36-25 road win over No. 16 Baylor.
It wasn’t Sanders’ most impressive performance of the season but he did end with 256 total yards - 181 through the air and 75 on the ground - and both a rushing and passing touchdown.
On the season, Sanders has 1,097 yards and 11 touchdowns through the air and another 185 yards and four touchdowns with his legs.
This is the spot to capitalize for Sanders with Baylor - one of the best defenses in the Big 12 - in the rearview mirror.
The rest of the schedule leaves plenty of opportunities for big games and Sanders has a chance to boost his stock when the Cowboys host Texas Tech this week.
Texas Tech allowed Kansas State quarterback Adrian Martinez to run for 171 yards and three touchdowns last week. Sanders should have no issues against this defense and could have a huge game.