Caleb Williams, CJ Stroud Heisman Trophy Race

Published on: November 26, 2022, 10:59 am.

Last updated: November 26, 2022, 10:59 am.

Ohio State vs. Michigan is the biggest game of the final weekend of the college football regular season, but this year’s game also has Heisman Trophy implications.

Williams Stroud
USC quarterback Caleb Williams (pictured left, center) is the new Heisman trophy favorite at sportsbooks. However, Ohio State quarterback CJ Stroud (right) has the backing of several bettors at Caesars Sportsbook. Both play in big games on Saturday that could decide who lifts the trophy in two weeks. (Images: John McGillen/USC Athletics and OhioStateBuckeyes.com)

Ohio State quarterback CJ Stroud has been one of the betting favorites for college football’s top individual award all season and enters Saturday’s big game as the consensus second pick at the big four sportsbooks behind Southern Cal quarterback Caleb Williams.

No one else has odds of less than 10-1, which means oddsmakers believe it’s a race between Williams and Stroud.

And the margin between the two is narrow, and a big performance from Stroud could shorten his chances again.

Heisman odds
The Heisman odds are current as of Saturday morning and are subject to change.

Both players will have the spotlight on Saturday. The Ohio State-Michigan game kicks off at noon ET on Fox to kick off the day-long college football celebration. USC hosts Notre Dame in a prime-time affair, 7:30 PM ET on ABC.

Tape story: Williams vs. Stroud

Both quarterbacks have put up eye-popping numbers through the first 11 games of the college football season.

Stroud completed 66.4 percent of his passes (204 of 307) and threw for 2,991 yards. He also has a 35-4 touchdown/interception ratio while leading the Buckeyes to an 11-0 record thus far.

The redshirt sophomore also was pulled early from several games where the Buckeyes had big leads in the second half.

Williams, meanwhile, played a little more in USC games. He has passed for 3,480 yards while completing 64.9 percent (250 of 385) of his throws and has a 33-3 touchdown/interception ratio.

Williams also ran more, carrying the ball 88 times for 316 yards and seven touchdowns, compared to Stroud’s 77 yards on 33 carries.

While Williams has slightly lower odds, he does have one loss on his record — though the 43-42 loss at Utah on Oct. 15 wasn’t a bad one, as the Utes are a ranked team and Williams played well (25 – of-42 for 381 yards, 5 TDs and no interceptions).

Still, a USC loss and an Ohio State win could very easily flip the odds back to make Stroud the favorite before next weekend’s conference championship games.

Stroud the more popular choice at Caesars

Williams has become the betting favorite at Caesars on Thanksgiving, although Stroud remains the most popular choice.

Through Friday afternoon betting, the Ohio State quarterback accounts for 5% of the bets, more than anyone else on the futures board, and also leads with 14% of the handle.

Williams’ 3% of tickets makes him fourth among Caesars punters, although his 4% of the handle is second only to Stroud.

Ballots will be sent Monday to 870 members of the media as well as living Heisman winners. Voters will rank three candidates, with the first choice receiving three points, the second choice earning two, and the third receiving one.

Ballots are due by Dec. 5, and the Heisman Trophy Trust will announce the finalists the same day.

The winner will be announced on December 10 at an awards show in New York televised by ESPN.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *