June 17, 2014 - by
ACC Heisman Winners a Rarity but League Isn’t Lacking for Candidates – Florida State University

ACC Heisman Winners a Rarity but League Isn’t Lacking for Candidates – Florida State University


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ACC Heisman Winners a Rarity but League Isn't Lacking for Candidates

Courtesy of Jim Henry, FanHouse.com

There's no need for a calculator or fancy math. Heisman Trophy winners from the Atlantic Coast Conference have been few and far between.


There have been just two -- quarterbacks Charlie Ward and Chris Weinke, both, of course, from Florida State. Ward won it 1993 and Weinke in 2000.

The ACC has a few loose ties to the Heisman, however. 

Doug Flutie of Boston College (1984), Vinny Testaverde of Miami (1986) and Gino Torretta of Miami (1992) each won the Heisman Trophy, but that occurred before their respective teams joined the ACC. On the flip side, George Rogers of South Carolina was the 1980 Heisman winner, nine years after the Gamecocks left the ACC. 

Enough stretches. Can the ACC end its Heisman drought in 2010?

This much we know for certain:

Eight of the past 10 Heisman Trophy winners have been quarterbacks, with only USC's Reggie Bush (2005) and Alabama's Mark Ingram (2009) as the lone non-signal callers. Additionally, only one Heisman Trophy winner in the history of the award has ever won with a losing record -- Notre Dame quarterback Paul Hornung in 1956. The Irish were 2-8 that year. 

With those tidbits to nibble on, let's take a look at some of the ACC Heisman Trophy candidates -- some obvious and some not-so-obvious. 


Christian Ponder, senior quarterback, Florida State

What's not to like about Ponder? Want smart? He's already completed his undergraduate degree in finance, earned his MBA and will be halfway through a master's degree in sports management this fall as a senior. Want talent? He was on pace to throw for more than 4,000 yards last season -- and was having the best year of a Seminole quarterback since Weinke won the Heisman in 2000 -- before he injured his throwing shoulder on a tackle following an interception at Clemson on Nov. 7. Want motivated? Ponder is fully recovered and should put up some big numbers behind a veteran offensive line. 

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