Week 3 Heisman Watch: Sam Hartman & Michael Penix Improve Chances During Caleb Williams’ Bye Week

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With Week 3 of the college football season in the rearview mirror, the landscape of the Heisman Trophy race has seen some notable shifts. With USC’s star quarterback and last season’s Heisman winner, Caleb Williams, off the field due to a bye week, the opportunity arose for other contenders to close the gap, and two names stood out from the crowd: Sam Hartman and Michael Penix Jr.

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Sam Hartman (QB, Notre Dame Fighting Irish)

  • Week 3 Stats: vs.Central Michigan, W 41-17; 16/26, 330 yds, 3 TDs; 1 rushing TD.
  • Heisman Odds: +700

Starting the season in impressive form, Hartman has been one of the best QBs in college football and has instrumental in guiding the Fighting Irish to a perfect 4-0 record. This recent victory helped propel Notre Dame to 9th in the national rankings.

Looking forward, a tantalizing clash awaits in Week 4 against the sixth-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes. A dominant performance there might cement Hartman’s status as a prime contender for the Heisman.

Michael Penix Jr. (QB, Washington Huskies)

  • Week 3 Stats: @ Michigan State, W 41-7; 27/35, 473 yds, 4 TDs.
  • Heisman Odds: +600

Penix Jr. is undeniably on fire. With a hat-trick of 400-yard games and an impressive 12 TDs to just 1 interception this season, his consistency in Washington’s potent air attack cannot be overlooked. In fact, he banked 375 yards and 4 touchdowns in the first half against Michigan State, before eventually having a breather midway through the third quarter to let somebody else have a go.

If he continues this trajectory, Penix might just find himself more than just in the heart of the Heisman conversation.

Quinn Ewers (QB, Texas Longhorns)

  • Week 3 Stats: vs. Wyoming, W 31-10; 11/21 131yds, 2 TDs; 1 rushing TD.
  • Heisman Odds: +500

Though Ewers’ Week 3 stats weren’t as gaudy as his counterparts, his on-field presence seems to have resonated with sportsbooks. Ewers saw his odds improve considerably, moving from +800 post-Tuscaloosa victory to +500 after the Wyoming win.

Texas struggled for three quarters before eventually pulling away, but 31-10 reads a lot more comfortably than the game played out.

Trending Down

Travis Hunter (WR/CB, Colorado): A devastating blow for the dynamic two-way player. Hunter was injured in Colorado’s triumph over CSU Rams and is slated to miss the upcoming weeks. As a consequence, his Heisman odds have drastically increased to +20000.

Jordan Travis (QB, FSU): Playing through pain can sometimes be a hero’s move, but for Travis, it may have affected his Heisman trajectory. Despite leading the Seminoles to a narrow 31-29 victory over Boston College, Travis saw his odds lengthen from +500 to +1400.

Caleb Williams Looking Over His Shoulder

With the season in full swing and the Heisman race heating up, these players have put themselves in the conversation and yet, there is still room fo those who might emerge from the shadows in the coming weeks.

For now, though, Caleb Williams may be looking over his shoulder at the onrushing Hartman and Penix Jr.

2023 Heisman Trophy Winner Odds

*Others available at BetOnline.ag. Odds correct at time of publication, but are subject to fluctuation.

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