Weekly Heisman Watch 2012

Georgia's QB Murray Steps into Race

1. Geno Smith QB West Virginia

West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith is the clear front runner for the Heisman trophy after a ridiculous 656 yard, eight touchdown performance against Baylor. The undefeated Mountaineers first Big 12 game set quite a standard for offensive excellence. For the season, Smith has 20 touchdowns with no interceptions and an 83 percent completion percentage.

Heading into a big road matchup with undefeated Texas, Smith will face a tough test from the stout Longhorns defense. Expect Smith to link up with his explosive playmakers Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey and lead the Mountaineers to a huge road win and advance his Heisman candidacy.

2. AJ McCarron QB Alabama

Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron continues to lead the Crimson Tide on their quest for another national title with stellar play under center. McCarron has 12 touchdowns and no interceptions and appears in complete control of the Tide offense.

With difficult road games at Missouri and at Tennessee in the coming weeks, McCarron will have the opportunity to raise his Heisman stock .

3. Aaron Murray QB Georgia

Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray continues to lead the Bulldogs with his efficient play. For the year, Murray has 12 touchdowns with three picks and 1370 passing yards. The undefeated Bulldogs face a hard road test at South Carolina in a pivotal SEC East matchup.

Expect Murray to be up to the task and make perform well, establishing himself as a legitimate Heisman contender.

4. EJ Manuel QB Florida State

Florida State quarterback EJ Manuel continues to play at a high level for the undefeated Seminoles, completing 73 percent of his passes, with nine touchdowns and one interception. The dual threat Manuel will be a handful for ACC defenses to contain as the season unfolds.

With the Noles favorable schedule going forward, Manuel should have the opportunity to build up his Heisman profile.

5. De'Anthony Thomas RB Oregon

Oregon running back DeAnthony Thomas is off to a slow start in Pac-12 conference play while his teammate Kenjon Barner had a huge game against Washington State, rushing for 195 yards and scoring four touchdowns. For the season, Thomas has scored eight touchdowns on 50 offensive touches.

Moving forward, Thomas will have to increase his production to remain in the Heisman hunt. With plenty of games against ranked opponents remaining on the schedule, Thomas will have the opportunity to make his case.