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CFN Analysis - Cam's Heisman Landslide
Auburn QB Cam Newton
Auburn QB Cam Newton
Posted Dec 11, 2010

Controversy? Whatever. Even with all the focus on the off the field problems, Cam Newton became Auburn's third Heisman winner in one of the biggest blowouts in the awards' history. Andrew Luck finished second, LaMichael James third, and Kellen Moore fourth, but it wasn't even close. The voters spoke volumes with 729 first place votes on the 866 submitted ballots.

CFN Analysis   

Cam Newton Wins the Heisman

- 2010 - The Cam Coronation 
- 2009 - Mark Ingram Wins Bama's First Heisman 
- 2008 - Sam Bradford Wins A Nailbiter 
- 2007 - Tim Tebow Becomes 1st Sophomore To Win 
- 2006 - Troy Smith Wins In A Landslide 

What If The Heisman Voting Was Done After The Bowls? 
- 2000 to 2009 | 1990 to 1999 | 1980 to 1989 | 1970 to 1979

Ranking the All-Time Winners

- The 25 Greatest Heisman Winners | No. 25 to 50 | No. 51 to 76

Heisman Winners - Top 5 Races, Player to Not Win, and More
- 2000 to 2009 | 1990 to 1999 | 1980 to 1989 | 1970 to 1979
- 1960 to 1969 | 1950 to 1959 | 1940 to 1949 | 1930 to 1935

By Pete Fiutak

Heisman Trophy Tally
Player 1st 2nd 3rd Total
Cam Newton 729 24 28 2,263
Andrew Luck 78 309 227 1,079
LaMichael James 22 313 224 916
Kellen Moore 40 665 185 635
Yeah, yeah, yeah, Cam Newton won the Heisman Trophy. There really wasn’t any drama there. The real question about the awarding of the 76th award revolved around how much of a statement the voters were going to make.

How much did the pay-for-play scandal matter in the voting? Out of the 928 ballots mailed out, 62 weren’t returned. That’s not too far out of the norm, but a few voters had mentioned they were abstaining this season in a form of protest. 105 left Newton’s name off the ballot entirely in another form of protest regarding the integrity issue.

No one worthy of a Heisman vote should believe that Andrew Luck, LaMichael James, or Kellen Moore were worthy of a first place vote based on what happened on the field, but considering 140 of the 866 voters who submitted their choices picked someone other than Newton, I’d like to hear the reason.

I’d like to hear the why James, who was arrested on charges of domestic violence before the season, and served a one-game suspension, deserved the integrity vote more than Newton. I’m on the inside with the Doak Walker voting, and I can attest to the fact that James was completely vetted and that the incident was a one shot fluke, but if you’re going to be all high and mighty when it comes to a protest vote, make the case why James was a better college football player in 2010 than Newton.

There’s no question that James had a Heisman-worthy season, averaging 153 yards per game with 21 scores, but Newton ran for 1,409 yards to James’s 1,682, ran for 20 scores, led the nation in passing efficiency, AND threw for 28 touchdowns with 2,589 yards. James and Newton had the same number of receiving scores: one.

Andrew Luck had a great year, and there’s no question that he’ll be the No. 1 overall draft pick whenever he’s ready, but what, exactly, did he do that was worth 78 first place votes? An argument could be made that James deserved the Heisman as the nation’s leading rusher, while taking Oregon to the BCS Championship, but Luck helped carry his team to the Orange Bowl. That’s nice, but not legendary. He finished seventh in the nation in passing efficiency, ran for 438 yards and three touchdowns, threw for the same number of scoring passes and Newton, and threw for almost 500 yards more in one fewer game. Great, so he rallied the Cardinal to a win over USC at home. That’s not exactly coming back from 24 down to win the Iron Bowl in Tuscaloosa, now, is it?

There’s no rationale for Kellen Moore. Sorry, but 11-1 in the WAC doesn’t work compared to 13-0 in the SEC. Second in the nation in passing efficiency is great, but not when the No. 1 guy did it in a big-time conference. While he threw for almost 1,000 more yards, the -21 net rushing yards ends that part of the debate.

In the end, the margin of victory doesn’t really matter, but in this case it takes away from the greatest season any quarterback has ever had in the history of college football. It also will keep the question open: What would the vote have been without the controversy? It would’ve been a bigger blowout than Auburn over ULM.

By Richard Cirminiello


From the moment Cam Newton was cleared by the NCAA at the beginning of the month, it was a foregone conclusion that he was going to be this year’s recipient of the Heisman Trophy. And by a wide margin. Had he not been so dominant, however, he might have been vulnerable. Because of the pay-for-play scandal involving his dad, there was a contingency of voters that was looking for an alternative to champion when ballots arrived. A Toby Gerhart to Mark Ingram, for instance. It never happened.

As accomplished as Stanford’s Andrew Luck, Oregon’s LaMichael James, and Boise State’s Kellen Moore were in 2010, Newton was markedly better, leaving most voters only one clear-cut choice. If they wanted to make a statement with their ballot, as more than 100 abstainers did, the quarterback’s performance on the field made it that much tougher to pull off. Now, you just hope that the Heisman folks don’t regret this selection at some point in the future. It’d be a shame if such a brilliant season on the field was diminished by off-field infractions.

Assuming he stays on the Farm, you think Jim Harbaugh will mention on the recruiting trail that he’s coached the last two Heisman runner-ups? He’s done a remarkable job, developing an offense that’s conducive to success for both quarterbacks and running backs. As far as trends go, so much for a West Coast bias, with Luck, James, and Moore building their resumes in California, Oregon, and Idaho, respectively. Oh, and it’s good to see that numbers matter, but wins still reign supreme. The combined record of this year’s four finalists is 47-2.

By Matt Zemek

We knew that Cam Newton would be the 2010 Heisman Trophy winner, but the battle for second place actually did offer a little bit of mystery to the proceedings at the Downtown Athletic Club in New York. What can be concluded from the final tally of votes and points? Not as much as you might think.

The one conclusion that seems pretty safe to make is that a lot of Heisman voters did not watch the Boise State-Nevada game, which kicked off at 10:26 p.m. Eastern time on the night of Friday, Nov. 26. Kellen Moore was brilliant in that game, hitting just under two-thirds of his passes for 348 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions. Moore’s receivers dropped five balls in that game, at least one of which would have scored another touchdown. Moore threw the long ball at the end of regulation time that should have enabled the Broncos to win the game, except for the fact that… well, you know what happened then. It seems that Heisman voters saw the Boise loss and concluded that Moore didn’t measure up. If you watched the game and didn’t just look at the box score the following Saturday morning, you couldn’t have downgraded Moore.

It’s worth pointing out that in the 2010 American League Cy Young voting, Felix Hernandez – whose win-loss record was substantially inferior to that of his competitors – was still chosen as the winner of the prestigious pitching award. Would that the Heisman voters showed similar wisdom in giving Moore more than the 635 points he received, more than 400 points lower than second-place finisher Andrew Luck. It’s no great miscarriage of justice that Luck finished second with 1,079 points, or that LaMichael James finished third with 916, but it’s clear that Moore’s low point total stemmed from – no, not anti-Boise State bias!! – an unwillingness to stay up late and watch a game in the West. It’s ironic that since ESPN broadcast Boise State-Nevada while Stanford appeared on Fox Sports Net and Versus, you can’t say that ESPN influenced the Heisman votes. (Cam Newton, of course, played for a team whose games appeared on CBS.)

What do the Heisman vote totals tell us? Cam Newton was nobody’s second choice; he was either omitted from the ballot (by 105 voters) or viewed as the very best player. One wonders what the 105 voters who spurned Newton did with LaMichael James…

Oh, one more thing: The vote totals tell us that Cam Newton was recognized as the author of one of the greatest individual seasons in college football’s 142-year history.

Barrett Sallee

Through the drama, through the innuendo, through the unnamed and uncorroborated sources, Cam Newton persevered. And now, he’s a Heisman Trophy winner.

No matter what the detractors say, he deserves it.

Cam Newton has put together one of the most spectacular, awe-inspiring and dominant seasons in recent college football history, and there’s no doubt that he is the most deserving player in college football this year. He has led Auburn on one of the most magical seasons in school history, and he did it with the high-powered microscope of the NCAA, media and opposing fans examining his every move.

Bravo to the vast majority of voters who chose to vote on merit, rather than act as a judge and jury on off-the-field matters. Matters that, in case you forgot, were examined and ruled upon by the NCAA’s eligibility division. Something tells me the NCAA knows a little bit more about the situation than guys like Mike Bianchi, who was one of a select group of voters who chose to turn the Heisman vote into a courtroom of character rather than an award for the best player in college football.

Cam Newton earned the Heisman Trophy. Cam Newton deserves the Heisman Trophy. He is one of the most dynamic and amazing college football players that our sport has ever seen. If he is one-and-done at Auburn, he has left a legacy on the Plains that will be impossible to erase.