The Heisman Race, Week 5: Suddenly, Ohio State’s CJ Stroud is the big favorite

Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud looks to throw a pass against Wisconsin during last Saturday's game Saturday in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)
Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud looks to throw a pass against Wisconsin during last Saturday's game Saturday in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)

Each week, we’ll track the race for this year’s Heisman Trophy, awarded to the best player in college football, along with each contender’s odds and a look at who they face this week.

(Odds from Caesars Sportsbook)

Week 5

C.J. STROUD

Ohio State • QB • So.

HIS CASE: In Stroud’s first big stage of the year, he merely survived, throwing for two touchdowns in a slog past Notre Dame. He excelled in games against cupcakes, but the question remained: Could he do that against the best opposition? The answer was a resounding yes on Saturday, as Stroud passed for 281 yards and five touchdowns in a 52-21 beatdown of Wisconsin. As a result, his odds dropped more than 100 points at Caesars Sportsbook.

ODDS: +160

THIS WEEK: Saturday vs. Rutgers (3:30 p.m., BTN)

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BRYCE YOUNG

Alabama • QB • Jr.

HIS CASE: Speaking of proving Heisman worthiness against the best teams, that’s Young’s task this week. In easy wins over Utah State, UL-Monroe and Vanderbilt, he has 14 total touchdowns against two interceptions and added a 100-yard game on the ground. In a narrow escape against Texas, he passed for just 213 yards and one touchdown. There’s exactly one easy game left, so we’ll see what Young does from here.

ODDS: +450

THIS WEEK: Saturday at No. 20 Arkansas (3:30 p.m., CBS)

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CALEB WILLIAMS

USC • QB • So.

HIS CASE: A week after he hopped into the No. 2 spot on this list, Williams had the worst game of his short Trojans career, completing 16 of 36 passes for 180 yards. He did, however, throw a brilliant late touchdown pass to Jordan Addison to win the game, thus keeping his Heisman candidacy damaged but intact. One obstacle Williams must overcome is the clock; this is the third straight week USC kicks off after 9 p.m. ET.

ODDS: +500

THIS WEEK: Saturday vs. Arizona State (10:30 p.m., ESPN)

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ON THE RADAR: Stetson Bennett, Georgia QB (+1600); Hendon Hooker, Tennessee QB (+1600); Blake Corum, Michigan RB (+3000); Jalon Daniels, Kansas QB (+3500); Four at +4000 (Dillon Gabriel, Oklahoma QB; Will Anderson, Alabama LB; Devon Achane, Texas A&M RB; DJ Uiagalelei, Clemson QB)

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