The first week of College Football has ended, and sitting on the couch all Saturday, I was able to see all the games. I saw Florida State and Oklahoma State surprisingly have a close game, with Jameis Winston showing off another fantastic top ten play. There was LSU defeating Wisconsin, where the Badgers held a strong lead going into the fourth quarter, but faltered in the final 15 minutes. There was also Notre Dame and the Rice Owls Saturday at 3:30. In the Notre Dame and Rice game, the Fighting Irish took control from the beginning and were able to defeat the Owls 48-17.
In the Notre Dame and Rice game, I was able to see an almost forgotten face in Everett Golson. Golson is a senior, with one more year of eligibility, who led Notre Dame to the BCS Championship Game his sophomore year. After his sophomore year, Notre Dame was looking to comeback and reach another Championship game, but the team faced a major challenge before the season began. Everett Golson had been expelled from Notre Dame on charge of academic fraud. Notre Dame had lost a bright young star, and no longer seemed to be true title contenders.
He was able to shake off the expulsion, but Notre Dame still restricted him from playing his junior year. During his time off, he was reportedly working hard to comeback with a spectacular senior year. Now, in his senior year, almost 600 days after the BCS Championship game, Golson is back looking to be just that: Spectacular.
Luckily for Golson, he was not facing an Alabama caliber talent in his first game back. Golson was across the field from the Rice Owls, who were not horrible, but definitely beatable.
On his first two possessions, Golson looked very jumpy and excited. He had finished the two possessions with nothing to show for, but of course, there was another 55 minutes to play. On his third possession, Golson looked much better and looked ecstatic when he drove down the field, and ran in an 11 yard touchdown run. The run must have been an amazing feeling to someone who hadn't scored a beloved touchdown in over a year and a half.
To add extra excitement, Golson came back on the next possession, and on the first play, threw a 75 yard bomb to William Fuller.
Throughout the game, he looked great and happy to be back. At the end of the 60 minutes, Golson had a stat-line of 2 throwing touchdowns, 295 yards, and 3 rushing touchdowns. He still had a giant arm from 2012, an accurate on too, and could still run and juke anyone.
Watching that game, Golson got me hyped for the season ahead for the Fighting Irish. Golson looked like a true Heisman quarterback! After the game I thought to myself, could he really be the Heisman in 2014?
Well, Golson has the talent to make a run for it. Golson is a quick quarterback with great acceleration, who can run as well as he passes. Everett Golson's 40 yard dash time is 4.73, which is equal when compared to Jameis Winston's 4.72. However, when compared to the equivalency of the height and weight of Jameis (6'4, 235) Golson comes out 4 inches and 35 pounds lighter.
When pertaining to a throwing arm, Golson has one of the strongest arms in the game, as seen in the Rice game. However, on the other side, Winston is no where near a mediocre arm as he plays baseball and can bomb a baseball or football down field. The biggest difference between Golson and Winston is the stats of freshman year. Golson freshman year threw 12 TD and 6 INT for 2405 yards and a 58% completion percentage. Winston last year threw 40 TD, 10 INT, 4057 yards, and had a 67% completion percentage. Obviously, there is a major difference in freshman year statistics.
Finally, winning and leading comes into play when winning a Heisman. Winston and Golson both led their respected teams to a perfect regular season and a BCS Championship appearance. However, at the end of the day, Winston was able to lead Florida State to a trophy with 237 yards, 2 TD, and 0 picks, while Golson had 270 yards, 1 TD, and 1 pick. And this year, Notre Dame is a respected 17th rank, but Florida State is number one in the polls and are favorites again to repeat as champions. Although Golson had to face a much better Alabama team in 2012 than Auburn in 2013, people will always remember Winston's heroic game winning touchdown with 13 seconds remaining.
At the end of the day, Everett Golson looked fantastic against Rice. He showed off different assets to his game, and I am looking forward to the upcoming season. However, when you take a step back and look, you will see that Golson has only a small chance to win the 2014 Heisman Trophy.