While Alabama fans celebrate, Big 12 followers are crying foul over college football’s most controversial award. With Texas quarterback Colt McCoy and Nebraska defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh finishing third and fourth, many league fans believe 2009 is just the latest chapter in shoddy Heisman voting.
Nebraska’s Bo Pelini was probably the most outspoken critic of the process. Here are some strong quotes from the Husker coach’s reaction to Alabama’s Mark Ingram winning:
“I think everybody in that room knew who the best player in the country was,” Pelini said. “He's a defensive guy, and I don't think anybody's ever got past the bias that he's a lineman. I've said it before: Maybe they should redefine what the qualifications are."
“Call me biased, but I talked to a lot of people in that room, and every one of them thought (Suh) was the best football player in the country.”
“Unfortunately, the people who vote, some of them are uninformed,” Pelini said. “But I think when he's the No. 1 pick in the (NFL) draft, everybody will realize who the best football player in the country was.”
It seems to us that Pelini is doing a good job of doing a "Lane Kiffin." He wants to attract attention to his program. He, like everyone else, knows that the Heisman almost never goes to a defensive player. Calling voters uninformed is probably not the right way to put it either.
On the other hand, McCoy was fairly quiet afterwards, as he declined to do most interviews. He will use his third-place finish as motivation:
“This is not going to disappoint me,” said McCoy, who lost to Oklahoma's Sam Bradford by 122 points last year. “I'm looking forward to the national championship.”
As the Texas senior focuses on winning that National Championship, he will try to do the same thing that former ‘Horn quarterback Vince Young did in 2005--win the BCS Title after losing the Heisman to USC's Reggie Bush. That's the real way to make the biggest statement after all.
In the mean time, the Big 12 should probably accept the fact that Suh and McCoy likely cancelled each other out. It's usually the case that two strong players from the same region create split votes that undermine each Heisman campaign.
Honorable Mention Big 12 Headlines: