It’s never too early to look ahead to the next College Football season, even if they are still cleaning up the confetti from the Superdome in New Orleans. This is when value can be found. It was at this point when people were getting their 200/1 Heisman Trophy tickets on LSU quarterback Joe Burrow.
Burrow would go on to win the award and be the next in a long line of signal-callers to win. In fact, since 2000, only three non-quarterbacks have won the award. I’m not saying Chuba Hubbard, Jaylen Waddle, or another non-quarterback can’t win the award, but the odds are not in their favor.
So beyond the position, I want to find quarterbacks who will put up impressive numbers on a team that wins and will have a shot at making the College Football Playoff come seasons end. These are likely contenders for the 2020 Heisman Trophy.
The odds on favorites are Ohio State’s Justin Fields and Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence who are at +350 and +500 respectively. Both are insanely talented quarterbacks who could easily take home the award and plenty of other hardware along the way. But value is often found later.
Think back to last season where it seemed like a forgone conclusion that the aforementioned Lawrence or Tua Tagovailoa with take home the award. As we know by now that did not happen. So let’s head to DraftKings Sportsbook to see what they have to offer!
Jamie Newman (QB – Georgia): 6/1
Graduate Transfer Jamie Newman is giving Georgia fans and bettors a reason to be optimistic about the Bulldog’s chances this season. Newman is heading to Athens in hopes he can elevate his NFL Draft stock and potentially win a National Championship in the process.
There was a lot of buzz about the potential changes Kirby Smart will be making this season. Well, Georgia made their decision and hired Todd Monken as the offensive coordinator for 2020.
Per Evan Silva, Monken was the passing game coordinator for JaMarcus Russel and offensive coordinator for Brandon Weeden at Oklahoma State. Both quarterbacks went in round one of their respective NFL Drafts. He was also the Buccaneers OC in 2018 that saw Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick combine for an impressive statistical season.
This is great news for both Georgia and Newman. Unfortunately for bettors, with this news, the line has already adjusted from 12/1 to 6/1. I liked it a lot more at 12/1 but with Monken coming into run the show on offense it’s still worth a look.
Newman has developed as a passer during his career with Wake Forest. He completed over 60% of his passes, throwing for 2,868 yards and 26 touchdowns. Newman also has the ability to utilize his legs rushing for 574 yards and 6 touchdowns a season ago. How much he will do that is still to be seen but knowing the playmaking is there should only add to his potential upside.
I’ll gladly back a quarterback who has the ability to lead his team to an SEC Championship, College Football Playoff appearance, and potentially a National Title.
Kedon Slovis (QB – USC): 40/1
Shopping around for the best number is an absolute must when betting anyone not named Fields or Lawrence. Kedon Slovis is a tremendous example of this principle. DraftKings Sportsbook has a very tasty 40/1 on the second-year QB while FanDuel Sportsbook has him at 20/1 and some offshore books have him at even less than that.
As for Slovis himself, he will have a chance to put up video game numbers in Graham Harrell’s offense. An offense that got a huge boost with word that Tyler Vaughns would return for the 2020 season.
Slovis flashed this season despite starting the year as an afterthought in the quarterback’s room in Southern Cal. He finished the season strong throwing for north of 400 passing yards and 4 touchdowns in the Trojans final 3 games of the regular season.
In a wide-open Pac 12, the Trojans can compete in the conference while Slovis puts up insane numbers. At 40/1 I will gladly take my shot with him in 2020.
Adrian Martinez (QB – Nebraska): 40/1
If you want to talk about a number that has value, take a look at Nebraska’s Adrian Martinez. This was a player I suggested bettors avoid a season ago based on the number. Last year at this time, Martinez was sitting at 12/1 which felt far too aggressive.
Heading into this season, however, a 40/1 number is much more palatable. Scott Frost is still there and now he has newly hired Matt Lubick who will be the offensive coordinator. The two coaches have a great relationship and worked together for two seasons at Oregon.
There’s a potential for Martinez to show much of the promise he has and at least be in the conversation in New York if not take home the trophy.
Player to Avoid
Myles Brennan (QB – LSU) – 14/1
Nothing against Myles Brennan who is a talented quarterback and has a bright future, but this number has much more to do with what Joe Burrow just did. Joe Brady is gone and back in the NFL being named offensive coordinator in Carolina. Getting another year of Ja’Marr Chase is huge for Brennan and LSU, but I’m not sure if it will be enough to get him to New York, let alone to be able to hoist the hardware come seasons end.