Since the conference’s formation two decades ago, the amount of Big 12 Heisman winners (5) trails only the SEC (6). However, we approach the fifth year since a Big 12 Heisman candidate last hoisted the hardware; the longest drought in the league’s history.
Robert Griffin III dazzled in 2011, edging two-time Stanford runner-up Andrew Luck to win the Big 12’s fourth Heisman in 10 years (Eric Crouch, Nebraska, 2001; Jason White and Sam Bradford, Oklahoma, 2003 and 2008).
Since then, Big 12 Heisman finalists have finished third in balloting (Kansas State’s Collin Klein in 2012) and out of the running the last three seasons since. That’s rather surprising, given some of the astronomical numbers quarterbacks like Bryce Petty, Trevone Boykin and Baker Mayfield have registered.
This recent precedent suggests Big 12 Heisman candidates are at some kind of disadvantage. With at least heavy, preseason favorite in the mix, however, the Big 12 may have its best shot to bring the Heisman back home since 2011.