277 Ballots: Ingram lead holds, Gerhart & Suh in dead heat

We've now tracked down more ballots than ever before. Part of the reason? It's one of the closest races ever - and we may have a Trophy winner with one of the lowest vote totals ever. (More on that later.)

For now, the lead held by Mark Ingram is holding steady. But the race between Toby Gerhart and Ndamukong Suh for second-place is a dead heat. Colt McCoy is solidly entrenched in fourth place, and Tim Tebow remains pegged at fifth.

Ingram is at 44.2%, Gerhart at 40.6%, Suh at 40.3%, McCoy at 30.9%, and Tebow at 9.7%. We'll make our final projection Friday morning.

Here's the regional breakdown:

M Ingram11424756692473530
T Gerhart0859606474322419
N Suh38281256864312618
C McCoy02322683844312213
T Tebow05667311682

Kari Chisholm | December 10, 2009 | Comment on This Post (139 so far)
Permalink: 277 Ballots: Ingram lead holds, Gerhart & Suh in dead heat



Jason, you're an idiot! Your stats mean absolutely nothing! They were compiled in two different leagues! Leagues who play entirely different styles of football. All you have to do is check last year and you will find an even larger advantage than there is this year. And lookey what happened! Your highest scoring team in the history of college football Okiahoma, with its supposedly elite defense, got shut down and run over by Florida. Your co-south champion Texas Tech got annhialated by our mid-level Ole Miss! And you know damn well that Texas is not playing as good as they were last year! The SEC has put it on all the other conferences already this year by everybody except Vandy. That's not saying that Texas can't beat Bama. But for anybody from the Big 12 to try and use comparative stats to prove the Big 12 is better than the SEC - well, that's just completely retarded! RTR! Hey SAT.com, where's the update? Yesterday you had one at 10:20am!

Posted by: Crimsonite | Dec 11, 2009 11:12:15 AM


Posted by: Average Joseph | Dec 11, 2009 11:13:09 AM

SUH FOR HEISMAN!!! WE NEED A DEFENCE PERSON! ITS BEEN TOO LONG. Toby is good, I saw he should be 2nd!!!!!!!

Posted by: Johnny | Dec 11, 2009 11:17:43 AM

joefriday ... again, Suh played on a defense that was unquestionably one of the best in the country, and he led them for the season in tackles, solo tackles, and blocked kicks, along with the sacks and TFL you're fixated on, and was second in passes defended. And that didn't change with the Big 12 Championship game; he led all of those categories most of the year (except perhaps for sacks). That's virtually unheard of for a defensive tackle.

Posted by: Kent | Dec 11, 2009 11:18:19 AM

Stickthegod: That's because the people who are saying that are retards and don't deserve to even have an opinion on the game of college football because they know absolutely nothing about it. No way can any human being be perfect for an entire football season. Sure, you may say, "Ohh but wait, Gerhart did it", but that is a false claim, EVERYONE knows the only team year in and year out that has a good defense in the pac-10 is USC. See where they were this year? Why should I think any of the other teams have gotten better this year?

Posted by: nd | Dec 11, 2009 11:33:55 AM

Some sample Suh solo tackle numbers this season:
Kansas 2
Oklahoma 1
Virginia Tech 1
Loisiana Lafayette 1
He did do better in some other games and was able to raise his regular season average to an incredible 3.3 per game.

Posted by: joefriday | Dec 11, 2009 11:34:55 AM

How many of those former heisman winners voting for McCoy were QB's???

Posted by: Brandon | Dec 11, 2009 11:43:30 AM

Listed below and to the right is the order of conferences with the number of college football national championships in parentheses.

SEC -- (16) add one bama beating texas

Big 12 – (16)

Big Ten -- (13)

ACC -- (9)

Pac-10 -- (4)

Big East -- (3)

Alabama comes in 5th (Michigan, Notre Dame, Texas and Nebraska have all won more). Actually, in the AP era (since 1936), the OKLAHOMA SOONERS have the most wins. See Winningest College Football Teams: AP Era; 1936 - 2008.

But, Alabama's all-time record of 786-303-43 was accomplished in fewer years and fewer games than the teams ahead of them.

How bout National Championships?

The fact is that Alabama has arguably won as many college football National Championships as anyone. Before the advent of the BCS, college football championships were decided by voting in multiple polls. So, the further back you go, the more difficult it is to name only one team as the champion as there often were several major polls, each naming a different national champion.

SEC vs Big Ten Football

Through 2008, the SEC leads the Big Ten with a 66-47-2 all-time record.

The SEC has a .583 winning percentage versus the Big Ten.

SEC vs ACC Football
The SEC holds an 255-123-10 (.670) all-time advantage.

In the past 11 years (1998-2008) the SEC leads the ACC in head-to-head games with a 45-36-0 (.556) record.

SEC vs Big 12 Football

The SEC leads the Big 12 in all-time head-to-head match-ups with a 20-17-0 (.541) record.

Over the past 11 years ('98 -'08) the SEC holds a 20-17-0 (.541) advantage.

Against the Big 12's predecessor (the Big Eight) the SEC had a 43-43-6 (.500) record.

SEC vs Pac-10 Football

The SEC leads the Pac-10 60-38-5 (.607). However, over the past 11 years (1998 - 2008), the Pac-10 actually leads the SEC 10-7 (.588).

The above calculation is based on "historical conference affiliation." If you run the same SEC vs Pac-10 numbers based on "current conference affiliation" you find out that the SEC leads 63-40-6 (.578).

SEC vs Big East Football

For now, the current all-time, head-to-head, SEC vs Big East football record (through 2008) shows the Big East with a 20-16 (.556) advantage.

All of these games occurred after 1990.

If looking for SEC vs Big East football head to head record based on "current conference affiliation" -- here you go: The SEC leads 98-58-9 (.594).

SEC vs Ivy League Football

The all-time SEC vs Ivy League football record is:
8-4 (.667) in favor of the SEC.

So there you go not to mention 4 out the last 6 champs are from the sec

Bowls Wins Losses Ties Win %
SEC 348 190 149 9 .559
Pac-10 193 103 88 2 .539
Big Ten 209 97 111 1 .467
ACC 166 81 83 2 .494
Big 8 127 63 63 1 .500
Southwest 151 63 80 8 .444
Big 12 92 45 47 0 .489
Big East 76 42 34 0 .553
WAC 101 42 58 1 .421

Posted by: StopHatin | Dec 11, 2009 11:53:14 AM

The race is so close I bet this site is very hesitant to release their prediction in fear of messing up their perfect record. Well smart money should be on Ingram if you are making a prediction but my vote would be on the boy named Suh.


Posted by: Brad | Dec 11, 2009 11:57:37 AM

joefriday - Mark Ingram was credited with 3 touchdowns in the SEC championship game. If this average had held up for the regular season, he should have recorded 36 touchdowns. The actual total was 12.

The moral of the story? Stop trying to use extrapolation to prove anything about a whole season. You could extrapolate Mark Ingram's best game to make him look like Barry Sanders, or his worst game to make him look like Maurice Clarett, Pro-edition. You're also ignoring the fact that defensive statistics are more likely to come in bunches, while offensive statistics can be more consistent due to gameplanning. It's not Suh's fault that he can't control when he gets doubleteamed, any more than it's Ingram's fault that he sat on the bench during blowouts. That's what watching games is for.

Also, for the record, Sports Illustrated has been hyping Suh for the Heisman for months. So he's not a flash in the pan. Obviously he's getting a lot of votes because of one game, but that doesn't necessarily mean he didn't play well at other times.

Stop abusing statistics.

Posted by: CaptFamous | Dec 11, 2009 11:59:00 AM

To be fair here, comparing conferences is a terribly difficult thing to do. I think that each of the top 5 candidates are all outstanding football players, and each deserve to be considered the elite amongst their peers in college football.

However, if you look at the comparisons at the positions, I do not think it is close. I mean no insult to any team's fans, first of all. But Colt McCoy is the best QB in this race. His team is undefeated, and while he didn't rush for as many yards the fact that he is going to play in the championship game speaks volumes about his drive and competitive character. Tebow's numbers are down statistically compared to his last Heisman winning campaign, and I think Colt is clearly a better pure passer. That's just my two cents.

For the running backs, there are stats upon stats to look at, but for me it boils down to competition. The national statistics for rushing defense for Stanford's opponents this year were not very impressive. Ingram faced top competition all year against the run. He did have a fumble (his only fumble in his career) against Tennessee and he did not factor in the Auburn game. But, with all due respect to Stanford who played great games against elite teams in their conference, Toby didn't face the caliber of defense, statistically, that Ingram faced. To me, Ingram showed up and played against the top rated defense against the run in this country and torched them. Toby never got that chance. Maybe he would have played just as well, but we'll never know that. So, to me, Ingram should win the head to head with running backs.

Suh is the wild card here. I think he's hands down the best player at his position in the entire country. The issue is that only skill position players (even on defense) win this award. So, having said that, unfortunately I believe he will have to settle for the three prestigious trophies he's already collected.

So then it comes down to QB vs. RB, and usually the QB wins this most every time. But, the poor showing against Nebraska coupled with Ingram's performance against UF gives Ingram the edge here. Not to mention that I think the players are competing for the trophy in a year where people are getting tired of seeing nothing but QBs win this thing. So, my guess is Ingram, but it could be Toby's too. We'll find out tomorrow, but if I had to choose one and be honest with myself and everyone else I'd say that Ingram is the country's best player. It's a close call, but considering the competition he's been measured against and what he's accomplished relative to the players that have come before him at that school I think he is the best player in CFB.

Just my opinion though.

Posted by: NobodysFan | Dec 11, 2009 12:00:30 PM

crimsonite idiot,
and UTAH beat the shiz out of Bama. good point you made.

Posted by: Chad | Dec 11, 2009 12:01:38 PM

The race is so close I bet this site is very hesitant to release their prediction in fear of messing up their perfect record. Well smart money should be on Ingram if you are making a prediction but my vote would be on the boy named Suh.


Posted by: Brad | Dec 11, 2009 12:04:31 PM

3.3 solo tackles per game for a defensive tackle is a hell of a lot. The other DT up for the Nagurski award had a total of 25 tackles in 13 games ... fewer than 2 per game ... and just 11 solo stops. To take a page from joefriday's playbook, to be as dominant at his position as Suh was at his, a running back would have to run for 9,582 yards and 98 touchdowns.

Posted by: Kent | Dec 11, 2009 12:08:45 PM

Hey all you Tide fans out there.. Here is what scares me some. Im not even sure Ingram is the best RB on your team. Can you send Upchurch to Lincoln please.

Posted by: HuskerStlMO | Dec 11, 2009 12:10:01 PM

Im still laughing at the person who claimed Saban was "afraid" of Nebraska and they would "destroy" Bama and "yet another offensive line . Evidently someone forgot to tell this clown Nebraska LOST to FOUR different teams this year ...

That includes a LOSS to a Va Tech team that Bama easily handled . By the time the championship game is over you can change that number to TWO teams Nebraska couldnt handle .

Other than that I can see the poster's "logic" . The Cornshuckers have reallllllly struck "fear" into the heart college football this season . Congratulations on winning the weakest division in your conference by default ( sucking LESS than the others sucked LOL ) ;-)

Posted by: Still Laughing | Dec 11, 2009 12:28:39 PM

Hmmm. Does most outstanding = best? If it does then MI is a joke and shouldn't even be a finalist. I guess if you define outanding as standing out then the prestige of Alabama football and the recognition it garners makes Ingram stand out. If he played at Vanderbilt and had the same numbers he wouldn't be on the ballot. He's 12th in the nation in rushing for crying out loud. His teammate Rolando McClain has had far more impact on Alabama's success this year. However, as has been pointed out several times above, the Heisman is not for the best (or even most outstanding) player in college football. It's for the most popular skill player on one of the best teams. Actual performance measured by statistics mean nothing. Just my humble (and completely accurate) opinion. LOL

Posted by: Jeff McV | Dec 11, 2009 12:43:14 PM

Here are a few specific arguments for Mark Ingram, which say a vote for Mark can be justified:

- Ingram gained 6.2 yards per carry to Gerhart's 5.6, or about 10% better, in a conference known for defense

-Ingram played against and beat six of the top 30 NCAA teams ranked for Total Defense (Florida 4, Va Tech 14, South Carolina 15, Tennessee 16, Mississippi 24, and LSU 28), while Gerhart played against two (Arizona St. 12 and Arizona 21) and lost one of those (Arizona)

-Ten of the top 15 runners ranked by the NCAA FBS had better average yards per carry than Gerhart, including Ingram

- Ingram's stats include a game where he had the flu and did not start, and it was against FIU where he could have had incredible numbers

- Ingram leads the nation with 38 runs of 10 yards or more

- Ingram leads the nation with 13 runs of 20 yards or more

- Ingram averaged 178 yards versus four Top 25 teams

- Ingram gained 1004 yards after contact

-And it's important to note Ingram only had 249 carries to Gerhart's 311. In other words, Gerhart had many more opportunities to rack up yards. Had Mark Ingram gotten 311 carries at his normal average, he would have finished with 1986 yards to Gerhart's 1736. And any close observer will tell you Ingram got stronger as the game progessed, so he could have managed the extra carries and would gladly have done so.

-Remember the 68 yard drive against a ranked South Carolina to close the deal, where he carried the ball time after time for the entire drive.

There are plenty of reasons for each candidate who have all performed admirably, but that one is for Ingram. He may win it, he may not. We'll see tomorrow. And we might get a hint if they make the prediction on stiffarmtrophy today.

Posted by: NobodysFan | Dec 11, 2009 12:48:12 PM


Posted by: Average Joseph | Dec 11, 2009 12:49:52 PM

Hey Jesse Palmer just announceed on college football live who is first on his ballot, and thats ingram, I know you guys knew who he voted for, but not the order, so there you go.

Posted by: Matt | Dec 11, 2009 12:50:08 PM

"statistics mean nothing"

With no frame of reference and selectively choosing which statistics you like ... you are correct Jeff ...

Posted by: Still Laughing | Dec 11, 2009 12:51:02 PM


Posted by: Average Joseph | Dec 11, 2009 12:53:38 PM

Posted by: Average Joseph | Dec 11, 2009 12:49:52 PM



Ummm can you be more specific ???

Which part of what I posted was incorrect ? That Nebraska lost to four different teams or that they couldn't even handle Va Tech after Bama cruised on them ? Maybe you don't like the fact that I pointed out that Bama is likely to end the season the same way it started it ... by beating a team Nebraska couldn't ?

Or did you just have a problem with me laughing at ANYONE suggesting Coach Saban and Bama would be "skeered" to play a Nebraska team four different teams have already beat this year ? I mean seriously ... come up with something to justify that silly statement that doesn't involve Xbox ....

Posted by: Still Laughing | Dec 11, 2009 12:59:11 PM

Still laughing,
this is an individual award here. Alabama is a better team with a better record. Got it! Suh deserves to win the trophy for the most outstanding player, hands down.

Also, Alabama did not 'cruise' against V-tech. V-tech had the lead in the 4th quarter of that game and pass interference NO CALL that should have given V-tech a first down changed that game completely. You watch out Bama-ites.....Texas will be able to block your line all day so Colt sits back and picks you apart to show how dominating Suh and Nebraska's d-line really is/was in that game. Have fun and dont be surprised when Ingram is crying because he lost the H-man and the National Title.

Posted by: Chad | Dec 11, 2009 1:10:07 PM

Ingram had 5 games this season with less than 100 yards. Is that Heisman material?

Posted by: gmw | Dec 11, 2009 1:10:21 PM

you can reasonably compare ingram and gerhart to each other and you can reasonably compare mccoy and tebow to each other. on the other hand, no one in college football can be compared to suuuuuuhweet.

there is no way any of the other four could play suh's position. whereas suh would outperform all of the other four at their positions.

i would enjoy seeing suh carry the ball 40 times a game from either the running back or qb position.

most likely opposing coaches would not be able to find anyone to play defense in the fourth quarter if suh had already carried the ball 30 times before then.

Posted by: eddie too | Dec 11, 2009 1:12:39 PM

quote from lance

"Think about it this way. If Ingram had a similar improvement in the SEC Championship he would have rushed for 626 yards. That's right, 626 yards in one game against Florida to match the level of Suh's performance improvement."

That is a very compelling case for Suh (even though you were trying to prove the opposite), and against an offense in Texas that was/is supposed to be so great. To have a career game against a potential national champion speaks volumes about the man. So why didn't Ingram rush for 626 yards against Florida if he is the clear winner?

Personally I think the QB from BSU deserves it, but just like the BCS the stiffarm trophy excludes non-BCS schools... so I guess go SUUUUUUUUUUH!

Posted by: mudraker | Dec 11, 2009 1:12:46 PM

Huge bama fan, all are deserveing. I really want ingram to win so i can say i saw bama's heisman in my lifetime. But i also can't really say anything if Suh wins. Toby had a great year but although i dont wanna bring this up... in the pac-10. even the biggest team in the pac-10 finished 6th this year in USC. you cant expect everyone to jump on the bandwaggon if USC had a bad year. This might be just me but if he carved up Sc like that and they were fighting for a spot in the BCS it would be diffrent. Stanford or Nebraska didnt even win there confrence champ and i know it is a best player award and not team, but if not for ingram i think alabama would have atleast two if not more losses. If stanford or nebraska was in the championship game it would be a diffrent argument but i belive team has a big role. Cant really complain who wins or doesnt when its all set and done but i just wanted to voice my opinion. But please leave thomas out of all this talk, he was a great linebacker and suh is a great d-lineman. its a big diffrence, the QB and the RB are nothing of the same just on the same side of the ball so just leave it be please. ROLL TIDE ROLL

Posted by: Topher | Dec 11, 2009 1:13:23 PM

the heisman is not a team award. it is not supposed to go to the best player on the best team. of course, if you play on the best team you are likely to have great stats for your position.

in some ways, being on the best team makes its best player look better than he actually is.

supporting cast does count, the better the team the less impressive the individual.

Posted by: eddie too | Dec 11, 2009 1:14:45 PM

Suh is an AMAZING DEFENSIVE player. However, don't give me this crap about his numbers...

In 1988, Derrick Thomas finished TENTH in the Heisman voting after a season that included 27 sacks, 88 tackles, Blocked Kicks 2, tackles and sacks for a loss combined 44, quarterback pressures 39, and forced fumbles 4.

Finished 10th!!! Match up those numbers with Suh and get back to me...

Posted by: Thomas | Dec 11, 2009 1:15:35 PM

1. Suh
2. Gerhart
3. McCoy
4. Ingrams backups
5. Spiller
6. Kellen Moore
7. Dixon
8. Tebow
9. Ingram
10. Dillard

Thats how I see it.

Posted by: Chad | Dec 11, 2009 1:18:58 PM

Derrick Thomas was a LINEBACKER LINEBACKER LINEBACKER. He should have had way more tackles then that as a linebacker. An average linebacker this year has over 120 tackles. Average linebacker! Dont bring up Thomas again. He did have alot of sacks for a LINEBACKER but not in the other stat categories. SUH is a DEFENSIVE TACKLE, D-TACKLE.

Posted by: Chad | Dec 11, 2009 1:21:34 PM

I am amazed that some of you think Ingram carried UA this year. I truly believe you could plug in any starting running back in the SEC and get the same if not better results.

Posted by: Jeff McV | Dec 11, 2009 1:22:14 PM

Alabama's Cody wouldnt even start at Nebraska on their D-Line. He is a turd!

Posted by: Chad | Dec 11, 2009 1:22:51 PM

:::correction since this sited does not allow edit posts:::

the quote i put in earlier was from joefriday not lance. sorry lance your name was at the top of the post which is where most threads place the author. i did not realize until after reading my post that this site places the author at the bottom of the post.

Posted by: mudraker | Dec 11, 2009 1:23:23 PM

Stanford lost to Wake Forest. Tough competition, eh?

Posted by: Dabo | Dec 11, 2009 1:38:19 PM

CaptFamous, thanks for your well taken point about Ingram's 3 touchdown performance in the SEC championship. He actually scored 15 touchdowns in the regular season, so he only averaged 1.25 per game. He scored 2 touchdowns in six games during the regular season and none in three of them. When looking at touchdowns this was his best game, but only one better than in six contests. He actually ran for less yardage than his season average and had that great play on the screen pass. Overall for Ingram, an above average game for him in the biggest game of the season so far in college football.
My point about Suh remains the same. He had a superb game. One can reasonably say that it was the best single game performance by an individual player in the 2009 college football season. However, one game does not make a season. The two outstanding measurable aspects of his game were sacks and tackles for loss. While he had a year deserving of his many defensive awards, he never had another regular season game, nor did he have an overall season that was even close to this one game performance. Fortunately for him it came against Texas in a Big 12 Campionship game that was the last game H------ voters saw before voting. The hype was incredible, as my previous posts stated, and pushed him into a trip to NYC with a decent chance to make history. We shall see.

Posted by: joefriday | Dec 11, 2009 2:02:46 PM

Your methodology is spectacular.....If the voting percentages continues as per region...My statistical analysis says Ingram 1st, Suh 2nd and Gerhart 3rd.

Posted by: Gary | Dec 11, 2009 2:52:24 PM

Congratulations on the award Mark ... only one more task left to go this season . Then you and the team can take a well earned rest. (till spring practice ;-) )

Posted by: Rolling Rolling Rolling | Dec 12, 2009 2:12:38 AM

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