AUSTIN, Texas (Sept. 15) — Georgia Tech quarterback Joe Hamilton might not have left the field victorious after last Saturday’s epic showdown with Florida State, but in the eyes of Heisman Trophy voters from across the nation, he was a winner.
In an amazing turnaround from last week’s Heisman.com poll, Joe Hamilton emerged from this weekend’s defeat against the No. 1-ranked Seminoles as a serious Heisman Trophy contender. After not receiving a single vote last week, Hamilton surged to third place in this week’s ballot.
However, Hamilton has a long way to go before he’s going to catch Florida State wide receiver Peter Warrick.
Warrick strengthened his position as the early Heisman front-runner by receiving 18 of the 30 first place votes available in the poll. That’s 11 more than Wisconsin running back Ron Dayne, who finished second for the second consecutive week.
Overall, Warrick out-distanced Dayne 66 to 41 in the scoring system which awards three points for each first place vote, two points for each second place vote and one point for each third place vote. It is the same scoring method that The Downtown Athletic Club uses when scoring the actual ballot. Only the top three names on each ballot receive points.
The big story surrounding this week’s poll is the emergence of Hamilton as a legitimate contender. Although, he only received one first-place vote, he was named on 12 of the 30 ballots.
Despite the loss to the Seminoles last weekend, Hamilton was brilliant in defeat. The nation’s leading passer threw for 387 yards on 22 of 25 passing, while having a hand in all five Yellow Jacket touchdowns, in a 41-35 loss.
“I needed to see Joe Hamilton one more time against Florida State to be convinced that he’s the Doug Flutie-type he has been hyped to be,” one voter said. “I’m convinced now.”
Finishing a close fourth to Hamilton was Purdue quarterback Drew Brees with 19 points. Linebacker LaVar Arrington of Penn State finished fifth with 16 points.
Rounding out the voting was Louisville quarterback Chris Redman (six points), Arizona State running back J.R. Redmond (four points), Tennessee running back Jamal Lewis (three points) and Florida quarterback Doug Johnson (two points).
BYU quarterback Keven Feterik, Colorado State running back Kevin McDougal and Miami (Ohio) running back Travis Prentice each finished with one third-place vote.
The Heisman.com poll consists of five Heisman voters in each of the six regions of the Heisman ballot. Those regions are the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, Southeast, Southwest and Far West.