The 2020 Heisman Trophy was Trevor Lawrence’s to lose.
While Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver DeVonta Smith is the overwhelming favorite to take home this year’s Heisman Trophy, Clemson Tigers quarterback Trevor Lawrence does present a compelling case.
While he may have missed two games due to testing positive for COVID-19, as well as having a third game taken off the schedule because positivity issues on the Florida State Seminoles side of things, Lawrence continued to be one of the most fascinating players in college football this season. He is not going to win the Heisman this year, but here are three reasons he should.
The 2020 Heisman Trophy case for Trevor Lawrence3. He would be the fist Clemson star to ever win the Heisman
There are very few college football programs as prestigious as Clemson to never have a Heisman Trophy winner before in their history. Frankly, quarterback Deshaun Watson should have been the first winner back in 2016 over Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson, but that is neither here nor there. 2020 is a weird year, so let’s continue to embrace the unprecedented for now.
Winning the Heisman will guarantee that Lawrence will one day be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame after his professional playing career comes to an end. Though he probably has done enough to earn “Atlanta enshrinement”, adding a Heisman to his mantle ensures us he will never be forgotten among the greatest college quarterbacks of our lifetimes.
2. Who doesn’t love a good, old-fashioned legacy Heisman?
Every so often we will get something we like to call a legacy Heisman. One of the most recent examples of this was Marcus Mariota with the 2014 Oregon Ducks. While he did have his proverbial Heisman moment vs. the arch rival Oregon State Beavers, Mariota won it because of his overall body of work in college. Lawrence certainly checks those boxes in his Heisman candidacy.
Since taking over mid-season his true freshman year in 2018, Lawrence has been a quarterbacking institution for the Tigers. He has been a part of so many big moments in Clemson football history. While a legacy Heisman is not likely to come this year, giving Lawrence the award would help solidify his place among the very best players of his generation. He would fight right in.
1. Don’t lie to yourself; He is the best player in college football
While be the first Clemson Heisman winner or the latest legacy Heisman would be cool and all, the single best thing Lawrence has going for him in his candidacy is this: He is the unquestioned best player in the sport. It is why he will be taken No. 1 overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the 2021 NFL Draft as soon as he declares for it. He projects as the NFL’s next version of John Elway.
Like Elway, Lawrence will end up being just a finalist for the award in his final college season. However, no player in his Heisman class will have as impactful of an NFL career as Lawrence will at the professional level. Though we will not want to hand Smith’s Heisman Trophy to Lawrence in hindsight like we have with other winners, again, the guy feels like he should have won one.
Lawrence may not win the Heisman Trophy, but his impact on the game has been undeniable.