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Northern Illinois QB Jordan Lynch for Heisman

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Why Northern Illinois Huskies QB Jordan Lynch should be a Heisman candidate.


Who is this Jordan Lynch guy?

Jordan Lynch is first year starting quarterback for the Northern Illinois Huskies. He has spend the last three years under the tutelage of four-year dual-threat starter NIU Chandler Harnish, who was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts last spring. Lynch came from one of the top football programs in the state in Mount Carmel. Most coaches were trying to recruit Lynch as a safety, but Coach Kill took a chance on Lynch in 2009 for the QB position.

This week his performance garnered Head Coach Dave Doeren's endorsement:

"I think the guy should be on the Heisman list. The guys close to breaking the all-time record for QB in rushing, throws four TD's runs for two, averages 130+ a game. He doesn't turn the football over, he's playing so hard and the fourth down throw shows you he's a clutch player too. I love the guy."

How close is Lynch to breaking the QB rushing record?

Lynch through 9 games: 1,185 yds.

2010's Denard Robinson through 9 games: 1,349

Lynch just needs to average 103.4 ypg over 5 games to break the record. Denard averaged 88.25 over four (no championship game) to set the record.

While we're talking about records, Lynch just set the record for consecutive 100 yard games by a QB with 7.

Why should Lynch be a Heisman candidate?

Because he has led NIU to an 8-1 record this season. Because he is offense personified, racking up ridiculous numbers like nobody's business. Not to mention he is doing it with an offensive line that had zero starting experience before this year. Rushing the ball is his specialty, but he can throw it too.

Here are some numbers:

  • Lynch is #1 in the nation in total offense with 3,169 yds on the season rushing and passing.
  • Lynch is #1 in the country in points responsible for with 192. His 32 rushing and passing TDs combined leads the nation..
  • The #1 rushing QB in the nation? Not Braxton Miller, not Denard Robinson. It's Lynch.
  • Lynch is the #2 rusher in the nation with 1,185 yds. Not just out of QBs, the #2 rusher overall in the nation just behind Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson who has 1,341 yds on 101 more carries.
  • Lynch is #4 in rushing TDs nationally with 15. Collin Klein is just ahead of Lynch with 16 on the season. This also puts him #4 in total TDs scored tied with 6 other players.

How do Lynch's stats compare to other QBs that are being considered for the Heisman?

Jordan Lynch, Northern Illinois

147-239 for 1,984 yds, 61.5% cmp, 8.3 ypa, 17 TDs, 3 INTs, 152.2 QB rat

170 att for 1,185 yds, 7.0 ypc, 15 TDs

409 plays for 3,169 yds total offense, 7.75 yds/pl, 32 tot TDs

1. Collin Klein, Kansas State

117-165 for 1,630 yds, 70.9% cmp, 9.9 ypa, 12 TDs, 2 INTs, 175.5 QB rat

122 att for 634 yds, 5.2 ypc, 16 TDs

287 plays for 2,264 yds total offense, 7.89 yds/pl, 28 tot TDs

2. A.J. McCarron, Alabama

122-177 for 1,684 yds, 68.9% cmp, 9.5 ypa, 18 TDs, 0 INTs, 182.4 QB rat

31 att for -51 yds, -1.6 ypc, 0 TDs

208 plays for 1,633 yds, 7.85 yds/pl, 18 tot TDs

3. Braxton Miller, Ohio State

112-198 for 1,527 yds, 56.6% cmp, 7.7 ypa, 12 TDs, 6 INTs, 135.3 QB rat

166 att for 1,093 yds, 6.6 ypc, 12 TDs

364 plays for 2,620 yds, 7.2 yds/pl, 24 tot TDs

4. Geno Smith, West Virginia

216-291 for 2,414 yds, 74.2% cmp, 8.3 ypa, 26 TDs, 2 INTs, 172.0 QB rat

35 att for 56 yds, 1.6 ypc, 1 TD

326 plays for 2,470 yds, 7.58 yds/pl, 27 tot TDs

Klein's the guy to beat, except Kansas State is undefeated, he's a better passer and his 28 TDs are right up there with Lynch. He's a big rusher, but a passer first, which is how voters like it. Lynch has better stats than Braxton Miller, but Ohio State is undefeated and plays a tougher schedule than NIU.

Other top candidates are Notre Dame LB Manti Te'o and Oregon RB Kenjon Barner, who both have built up a strong reputation up to this point.

What is the biggest obstacle Lynch has to overcome to be a serious Heisman candidate?

A few things:

  • NIU isn't undefeated. Team success plays such a vital role in putting your star player in the national spotlight. Case in point Mark Ingram in 2009. If anybody has a time machine to take us back to beat Iowa it would be greatly appreciated. Losses are sometime acceptable for a Heisman candidate, but not for a program that lacks national recognition like Northern Illinois.
  • Solution to this problem? Build a time machine. Just kidding. Beat Toledo and win the MAC.
  • NIU's strength of schedule is terrible. Sagarin ranks it 134th in the nation. The level of competition played against plays a huge part in the Heisman voting. That's why players from smaller schools always come so close to the trophy but never succeed.
  • Solution to this problem? A win over Toledo and the East team in the MAC Championship should put a bandaid on this problem.
  • Lynch isn't a typical Heisman candidate. He makes his money rushing the ball. Out of all the top candidates, he compares most to Braxton Miller of Ohio State. In terms of stats, Lynch kills Miller in every category, but see the undefeated point I made two bulletpoints up. Lynch is a weirdo, a running QB who isn't a phenomenal passer. Some may argue, but his 152.2 QB rating doesn't correlate well with recent Heisman finalists.
  • Solution to this problem? Just keep doing what you're doing Mr. Lynch. If he stays on this current pace, the stats should speak for themselves.

But hey, you never know. It's a pretty weak field this year and there are a few games left in the season for things to change in Lynch's favor. Next season though, just think about how awesome Lynch and the offense is gonna be... that's for a later time though.

A trip to New York this year is not out of the question.