Here’s one solid vote for the Honey Badger for Heisman

One of the greatest nature documentaries I’ve ever seen was called “Badger: The Meanest Animal on the Planet.”

Intrigued by the title alone, I was quickly sold on the badger’s place atop the meanness pyramid. The honey badger was particularly fierce, destroying a tree that housed bee colony and devouring the comb while being repeatedly stung in the face. Now that’s mean!

So maybe that 60 minutes has biased my opinion about this year’s Heisman Trophy race. The five finalists were announced Monday, and No. 1 LSU’s Tyrann Matthieu made the list despite being primarily a defensive player and doing much of his damage late in the season.

In reality, the “Honey Badger,” as he is known by teammates and now the rest of the college football world, has been making big plays all season for the BCS title game-bound Bayou Bengals; it’s just that most football fans are too busy watching the offensive stars to see a diamond in the rough liike Matthieu.

Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III, Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck, Wisconsin running back Montee Ball and Alabama running back Trent Richardson were the other chosen four, and they touched the ball enough times and put up the stats to earn them a spot at the New York Downtown Athletic Club on Saturday.

But while Luck and Griffin were throwing deep and Ball and Richardson were carrying the load, no player in college football did more to help his team win than Matthieu. He tackled, he stripped balls, he returned kickoffs and punts, he intercepted, he single-covered, and most of all, his team won every game.

From LSU’s season-opening victory over Oregon, when Matthieu stripped two Ducks of the football and recovered one, to the Tigers’ 42-10 win over Georgia in last week’s SEC championship game, when the Honey Badger returned a punt for LSU’s only points and positive yardage of the first half, No. 7 has been everywhere all the time.

Those are the kinds of season-saving plays that are deserving of the title “College football’s greatest player” distinction, as the Heisman is defined. Instead it has become a battle of the stat sheet, with yards and points counting more than tackles and turnovers.

Not to minimize the other four candidates. The front-runner Luck, a redshirt junior who bypassed the NFL, threw for 3,170 yards and a school-record 35 touchdowns while being named the Pac-12 offensive player of the year for fourth-ranked Stanford.

Ball, a junior running back, rushed for 1,759 yards and 32 touchdowns in helping the real Badgers return to the Rose Bowl for a second consecutive season. Griffin threw for 3,998 yards and 38 touchdowns in his junior year to carry the Bears to a 9-3 record, and Richardson, a junior, ran for 1,583 yards and 20 touchdowns for Alabama.

Meanwhile, Mathieu was named the SEC’s defensive player of the year while making 76 tackles and two interceptions, and returning a pair of punts for touchdowns. No quadruple-digit stats, but they don’t tell the full story. The Honey Badger plays with heart, and they haven’t come up with a category on the scoreboard that can measure that.

But they do have awards for such players, the kind that are decided by free-thinking humans and not BCS computers that simply process data and yield a result. Heisman voters have enough football background to make an objective decision about which player willed his team to an undefeated season and inspired teammates to great heights.

We know the Honey Badger is the meanest animal on the planet. Here’s to hoping he’s also the 77th Heisman Trophy winner.

Comments

comments

Florence fallout again pulls plug on Friday night lights

Florence fallout again pulls plug on Friday night lightsHurricane Florence 2, Horry County Schools 0. That appears to be [more]

Strand golf courses race to re-open in wake of storm

Strand golf courses race to re-open in wake of stormMyrtle Beach area golf courses, spared the worst of Hurricane [more]

SCHSL extends season but plans for Strand still afloat

SCHSL extends season but plans for Strand still afloatThe SCHSL's executive committee voted unanimously Tuesday to extend the [more]

Pelicans Young, Swarmer claim Cubs' POY awards

Pelicans Young, Swarmer claim Cubs' POY awardsMyrtle Beach Pelicans infielder Jared Young was named the Chicago [more]

Chants blow out Camels in front of Hurricane Florence

Chants blow out Camels in front of Hurricane FlorenceJust four days removed and 142 miles away from its [more]

Coastal baseball signs first BA Top 25 recruiting class

Coastal baseball signs first BA Top 25 recruiting classFor the first time in Coastal Carolina baseball program history, [more]

Hurricane Florence throws local sports scene a curve

Hurricane Florence throws local sports scene a curveIn response to the impending arrival of Hurricane Florence and [more]

Coast FA brings home five titles from Rock Hill Classic

Coast FA brings home five titles from Rock Hill ClassicCoast FA returned to the beach with five championship and [more]

CF boys finish second, MB girls net third at CCU meet

CF boys finish second, MB girls net third at CCU meetThe Carolina Forest boys finished second and the Myrtle Beach [more]

Chants explode in second half to cruise past Blazers

Chants explode in second half to cruise past BlazersCoastal Carolina football used a number of big offensive plays [more]

No. 4 Seahawks light up scoreboard, beat Braves

No. 4 Seahawks light up scoreboard, beat BravesThe No. 4-ranked Myrtle Beach football team celebrated Neon Night [more]

No. 6 Chiefs struggle their way past revitalized Sharks

No. 6 Chiefs struggle their way past revitalized SharksWithout raising his voice, without screaming his face red or [more]

Panthers take big win over Hoggard to stay unbeaten

Panthers take big win over Hoggard to stay unbeatenJackson Weatherwax knew he had the ball. Late in the fourth [more]

Football Roundup: Tigers, Saints fall, remain winless

Football Roundup: Tigers, Saints fall, remain winless* Hartsville 35, Conway 0: The Tigers (0-4) remained winless [more]

Golf: Sharks top Seahawks; Panthers knock off Braves

Golf: Sharks top Seahawks; Panthers knock off BravesThe three-time reigning state champion St. James girls golf team [more]

Chants hungry for first win in home opener vs. Blazers

Chants hungry for first win in home opener vs. BlazersThe Coastal Carolina football team will open up its 2018 [more]

Volleyball: Tigers improve to 6-0 with win over Bruins

Volleyball: Tigers improve to 6-0 with win over BruinsThe Conway High volleyball team improved to 6-0 Thursday by [more]

Week 3 Previews & Picks: MB has old score to settle

Week 3 Previews & Picks: MB has old score to settleMyrtle Beach junior quarterback Luke Doty has had this week's [more]

Tennis: Lady Panthers open season with win over Aynor

Tennis: Lady Panthers open season with win over AynorThe Carolina Forest girls tennis team served up a victory [more]

Chants move up in polls after acing UAB tourney

Chants move up in polls after acing UAB tourneyAfter posting back-to-back shutouts, Coastal Carolina's Chris Datallo has been [more]

Golf: Sharks claim second place at Palmetto Preview

Golf: Sharks claim second place at Palmetto PreviewThe three-time defending state champion St. James girls golf team [more]

Braves, Lady Chiefs finish runners-up in XC openers

Braves, Lady Chiefs finish runners-up in XC openersMetrolina Christian Academy of Indian Trail (N.C.) swept the Chief [more]

Saints' season put on hold due to low numbers, youth

Saints' season put on hold due to low numbers, youthOne year after a breakthrough season, the Christian Academy of [more]

Close loss closes curtain on long season for Pelicans

Close loss closes curtain on long season for PelicansIn the final game of the 2018 season, the Myrtle [more]

A Day at Darlington: Rain doesn't halt racing, revelry

A Day at Darlington: Rain doesn't halt racing, revelrySunday's Bojangle's Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway started with a [more]

Florence fallout again pulls plug on Friday night lights

Florence fallout again pulls plug on Friday night lightsHurricane Florence 2, Horry County Schools 0. That appears to be [more]

Strand golf courses race to re-open in wake of storm

Strand golf courses race to re-open in wake of stormMyrtle Beach area golf courses, spared the worst of Hurricane [more]

Comments are closed.

© 2018 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach