Dwayne Haskins Jr.
Sophomore, QB, Ohio State
BIO: After a redshirt year, the New Jersey native who played prep ball in Potomac, Md., waited his turn behind J.T. Barrett last year. His legend grew as he entered the 2017 Michigan game after a Barrett injury and led the Buckeyes to a come-from-behind victory. He became the undisputed starter last summer when Joe Burrow transferred to LSU.
KEY STATS: Finished the regular season with 4,580 passing yards and 47 touchdowns, both of which led the nation. Broke 11 Big Ten and Ohio State single-season records. Tied for 10th all-time for passing touchdowns in a single season in NCAA history.
THE SKINNY: Passed his way into the Heisman Trophy race and then put an exclamation point on it in the Big Ten championship, passing for 499 yards and five touchdowns against Northwestern hours before ballots were due. The week before, he lit up archrival and No. 4 Michigan for 396 yards and six touchdowns. The Rose Bowl on New Year’s Day may be his last game before he declares for the NFL draft, which seems likely. Experts say he could be a firstround pick.
Junior, QB, Oklahoma
BIO: First-round Major League Baseball pick by the Oakland Athletics chose to return to campus and play football. Started his college football career at Texas A&M before transferring. Backed up Heisman winner Baker Mayfield last year.
KEY STATS: Passed for 4,053 yards and 40 touchdowns with just seven interceptions; rushed for 892 yards and 11 scores. His 205.7 passer rating would be the best in FBS history.
THE SKINNY: Actually had a better season than Mayfield’s senior campaign. He added a dynamic rushing element at quarterback to coach Lincoln Riley’s offense, and teams have not been able to account for his speed. He shook off a rough start against Texas Tech to have one of his best games. Avenged regular-season loss to Texas in the Big 12 championship game. Constantly delivered when Oklahoma’s defense couldn’t give him a cushion.
Sophomore, QB, Alabama BIO: A native of Hawaii, Tagovailoa was a five-star recruit who came off the bench to lead a comeback in the national championship game to finish his freshman season. Beat out two-year starter Jalen Hurts.
KEY STATS: Passed for 3,353 yards and 37 touchdowns against four interceptions. Had a string of 194 passes without an interception starting in the third quarter of January’s title game with Georgia. Attempted only three fourth-quarter passes during the regular season with Alabama building big leads.
THE SKINNY: Opened the season as the favorite for the Heisman despite not starting a game, thanks largely to a performance in the national title game that included the 41-yard winning touchdown pass in overtime. Left the Southeastern Conference championship game in the same Atlanta stadium with a high ankle sprain. Injured early in the game and again late, it was a rare off-performance for Tagovailoa.