Heisman voter: Price can enter mix by beating Stanford

Oct 17, 2011, 11:41 PM | Updated: Oct 18, 2011, 12:11 am

By Brady Henderson

Washington quarterback Keith Price is on the outside of the Heisman Trophy consideration but could move his way in with a win over Stanford on Saturday.

That was the word from ESPN college football analyst Joe Tessitore, who joined “The Kevin Calabro Show” on Monday for a discussion on the early favorites to win the award.

Price, a redshirt sophomore, has 21 touchdown passes — one behind the nation’s leader — to just four interceptions. His 177.9 quarterback rating ranks fifth in the country.

KP-Colorado-2
Washington quarterback Keith Price has 21 touchdown passes this season, including four against Colorado on Saturday. (AP)

“He’s having an outstanding season. He truly is. He’s having as good of a season as you can expect from a guy at this level,” said Tessitore, a Heisman voter. “The problem is, it’s a bad year to be having a good season when there’s guys having great seasons, and when there’s guys having great seasons on BCS title-contending teams.”

Each week, Tessitore and other ESPN colleagues with Heisman votes submit ballots with the names of the three players they would vote for if they were to cast their official vote that day. He said so far, Price has not been included on a single ballot.

“He’s a guy that I think is somewhere out on the peripheral of guys people are looking at,” Tessitore said, “but not in anybody’s top three.”

A road win over Andrew Luck and No. 7 Stanford, a 21-point favorite, could change that, Tessitore said.

“[Washington has] to beat Stanford this week. You have to have a signature upset. You have to have a Heisman moment. You have to have big stats in big games with big exposure,” Tessitore said, rattling off the criteria for Price to have a realistic chance at winning the award.

“Right now, he’s had big stats not in big games with very little national exposure, so that equation just won’t work. I like him. I think he’s having a fabulous year, but he’s nowhere close to showing up on these ballots that we poll every week. This is the launching point this week.”

Tessitore said it would be difficult to imagine anyone beating out Luck, the current leader in the ESPN voters’ poll, if Stanford wins the Pac-12 and plays in a BCS bowl. Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson is second in the ESPN poll, ahead of Alabama running back Trent Richardson, Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III and Boise State quarterback Kellen Moore.

Tessitore noted that nine of last 11 Heisman winners have played in the BCS title game, an indication that voters tend to favor players on the nation’s best teams.

Follow Brady Henderson on Twitter @BradyHenderson

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