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NCAA Football: Heisman Rankings, Injury Update, #7 LSU vs. #21 Mississippi State

With four weeks to go until this year’s Heisman ceremony, contenders are building their stats and helping their teams reach a bowl game. The race isn’t  tight at this point but there’s enough time for change.

At the top of this list is Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein. He was injured in last week’s game against Oklahoma State but his coach Bill Snyder is hopeful he’ll return this week.

Looking ahead to this week’s games, I’m going to take a quick look at #7 LSU (7-2, 3-2) vs. #21 Mississippi State (7-2, 3-2).

Heisman Watch

Oregon RB Kenjon Barner

Even with his early exit last Saturday, Klein remains at the top of the Heisman lists from CBS and ESPN.

In his abbreviated game vs. Oklahoma State, Klein passed for 245 yards, one touchdown while rushing for 64 yards. To-date, the player has 1,875 passing yards, 12 touchdowns and two picks. He also runs and has 698 rushing yards with 17 touchdowns.

This week K-State plays TCU.

Behind Klein is Oregon running back Kenjon Barner.

Last week he had a stellar game against USC with 321-yards (a Ducks single-game rushing record) and five touchdowns. He’s an interesting candidate as he doesn’t get a lot of playing time in the fourth quarter. To-date, he has 22 carries over nine fourth quarter appearances but 1,295 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns overall.

This week Oregon plays Cal.

Rounding out the top three is Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron.

Last week wasn’t so great against LSU: McCarron was 14 for 27, 165 yards and one touchdown. But he was clutch, throwing the game-winning touchdown with 51 seconds remaining to T.J. Yeldon against rival LSU. This one play that will help his case for the Heisman.

To-date, he has 1,849 passing yards (173.5 rating) with 19 touchdowns and yes, zero interceptions.

This week Alabama plays Texas A&M.

Rounding out the Top 5 (varies which list you look at) is Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller and Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’O.

Injury Update 

Kansas State QB Collin Klein

At the top of this week’s injury list and conversation is again Klein.

Secrecy continues to surround his injury with neither details naming the injury nor its severity. Snyder remained optimistic on Tuesday that his starting quarterback would return for Saturday’s game.

He said via AP, “Let’s cut to the chase. Would I expect him to play? I certainly hope that’s the case, and I would expect that to take place.”

If Klein can’t play, freshman backup quarterback Daniel Sams will pinch hit.

In other NCAA injuries, Arizona quarterback Matt Scott suffered a concussion in last week’s loss against UCLA. He has been listed as questionable for this week’s game vs. Colorado.

Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson (elbow) was out last week against Minnesota and for this week against Northwestern, it is still undetermined on whether he’ll play. Earlier in the week he was splitting reps with backup quarterback Devin Gardner.

Whether or not Robinson plays this week, bettors give the Wolverines -11 with a 52.5 over/under.

#7 LSU vs. #21 Mississippi

LSU QB Zach Mettenberger

After losing to rival Alabama last week, the Tigers are hungry for a win while the Bulldogs will try to snap a two-game losing streak.

The teams enter the matchup with identical records but only LSU has a very slight opportunity to represent the SEC West for for the title game. This will only come if there’s a three-way tie for first with Alabama and Texas A&M.

After starting the season strong defensively, Mississippi State has given away 567 yards passing in their last two games. This could bode well for LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger.

His best game came last week against top defensive team Alabama with 298 yards, one touchdown and zero picks.

The Bulldogs haven’t defeated the Tigers in their last 12 games and this week, it may be No. 13 as bettors give LSU -14.5 with a 44.5 over/under.



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