By Jason Elmquist
STILLWATER, Okla. —
It’s an honor, really, to be asked to join the electoral college of college football’s pantheon — the Heisman Trophy.
When I was asked nearly a month ago — just 10 years removed from high school and just five from college — I originally thought it was a cruel prank from the more established media members around the state.
After being reassured that I was indeed being asked to become the 22nd media voter from the state of Oklahoma, I was honored — and admittedly giddy for a young man from a small town in Kansas, where the closest thing to a Heisman we’ve had was Barry Sanders (a Wichita, Kan., native).
Then came the questions from friends, family and fellow media members — who you going to pick?
I was non-commital, largely because one of the stipulations is not to make known my pick until after the announcement. It was the perfect excuse for the more real reason — I had no idea who I was going to pick.
Much like most sports fans, I have debated who should or should not be the Heisman, or the first overall pick — especially so this past year with being a Kansas City Chiefs fan. But now I actually have a say, albeit a small say as one of 870 media voters — plus another 50 or more from the prior winners of the trophies. Now I must analyze, re-analyze, over analyze, research and ultimate decide upon who I believe to be the top three football players in all the Football Bowl Subdivision.
I have until Monday to make my selection official, as I, unlike some media members, will wait for the entire college football season to play its part. Championship weekend plays as just a big a part determining the best player in the country as should the season openers played over three months ago — crazy to realize it’s been that long since J.W. Walsh supplanted Clint Chelf after two drives, later to be replaced by Chelf just over a month after.
So as fans watch the final games to decide how the BCS bowls will shakedown, and give their two cents as to who they believe should deserve the Heisman, I’ll be stressing more than an Oklahoma State fan watching the Bedlam game to figure out who is deserving of the prestigious honor. You only get to vote for the Heisman the first time once — or for some people, never — so gotta make it count.
Jason Elmquist is sports editor of The Stillwater NewsPress. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.