On Saturday evening, Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield will likely become the sixth player in school history to win the Heisman Trophy. This one has been in the bag for several weeks at this point. He’s operating at a clip that we’ve never quite seen before and is doing so while leading his team to huge victories. Mayfield is also the only finalist to lead his team to a berth in the College Football Playoff.
- Time: 7 p.m. CT
- Location: New York City, N.Y.
- TV: ESPN
- Streaming: WatchESPN
- Mayfield leads the FBS with a passing efficiency rating of 203.8. If Mayfield stays anywhere close to that pace in the postseason he could break his own FBS record of 196.4 from 2016.
- The Austin native also leads the FBS in completion percentage (71%), yards per attempt (11.8), yards per completion (16.6) and passing plays of 20-plus yards (75).
- Mayfield has thrown 41 TD passes (which ranks second nationally) compared to only five interceptions in 2017.
- In Oklahoma’s four biggest games (at Ohio State, at Oklahoma State, vs. TCU x2), Mayfield had a completion percentage of 69.4 while throwing for for 1,560 yards (390 per game) and 15 touchdown passes.
- Against ranked opponents, Mayfield has a passing efficiency rating of 215.3.
Of course, the stats don’t tell the entire story. Mayfield has come up huge time and time again when his back was against the wall. When OU has needed a big play, Mayfield has delivered. Let’s take a look at some of his best plays from the 2017 season:
Mayfield to Sermon – 9/9/17
Jeff Badet in motion – 9/23/17
“The Eyes of Texas” – 10/14/17
Mayfield has moves
Stiff-arm in Stillwater
Anderson out of the backfield
Mayfield to “Calcutta”
Fourth down in Lawrence
Threading the needle to Andrews
Threading the needle to Andrews again
Baker plants the flag in Columbus
“You forgot who Daddy is!”
Baker rides off into the OU-Texas sunset
Baker Mayfield waited patiently for possession of the golden hat…and then galloped off the field at the Cotton Bowl on an imaginary horse. pic.twitter.com/pz0viRbPkJ
— George Schroeder (@GeorgeSchroeder) October 15, 2017
The Bedlam performance
“Go cheer on basketball!”
On a national scale, Mayfield is considered a polarizing figure, and it’s easy to see why. However, he’ll also undoubtedly go down as the best quarterback in the history of his program. If (when) he wins the Heisman on Saturday night, his Heisman season will be considered the best in school history even if his Sooners don’t end up winning it all. This also obviously goes far beyond his stats. I don’t think any offensive player at OU has ever energized his guys quite like Mayfield has these past three seasons. He may not be perfect, but he’s without a doubt the perfect leader of a football team. He’s endeared himself to his teammates and fans unlike anyone I’ve ever seen in Norman, and that will likely be the case for a long, long time. The average Oklahoman is perhaps considered humble by nature, but we love it when our players and coaches bring swagger to the fields and arenas. Mayfield does exactly that.
If he ends up leading his team to two victories in the College Football Playoff, Mayfield will likely go down as the best to play football at OU — regardless of position. Perhaps this is recency bias, but I have a hard time believing that any player will ever be more beloved in Norman than Baker, especially if he can lead OU to No. 8.
Source: Crimson and Cream Machine
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