The early favorites for the 2019 Heisman Trophy are no surprise whatsoever. Superstar quarterbacks Trevor Lawrence of Clemson and Tua Tagovailoa of Alabama lead the pack of contenders, coming in with odds of +350 and +500, respectively, according to BetOnline.ag.
Also a leading preseason candidate? Jalen Hurts, who was beaten out by Tagovailoa last season and announced his transferred to Oklahoma in January, where he will be eligible to play immediately as a graduate transfer.
Trevor Lawrence burst onto the scene as a true freshman in 2018. The 6-foot-6, 215-pounder threw for 3,280 yards, 30 touchdowns, and four interceptions while completing 65.2 percent of his passes last season, leading the Tigers to the national championship. He was especially effective when it mattered most, too, combining for six touchdown passes and no interceptions in the College Football Playoff. Lawrence obliterated a theretofore dominant Crimson Tide defense in the title game, completing 20-of-32 passes for 347 yards and three scores in Clemson's crowning 44-16 victory.
It was Tua Tagovailoa who was the toast of the college football world before Lawrence took his mantle in the postseason. The first-year starter set defenses ablaze in 2018, throwing for 3,966 yards, 43 touchdowns, and eight interceptions while also rushing for five scores, finishing second in Heisman voting behind Oklahoma Sooners sensation Kyler Murray. He struggled with a championship on the line, however, throwing for two touchdowns and two interceptions against the Tigers.
Jalen Hurts, meanwhile, finished his Alabama career with a 26-2 record as a starter. He was replaced by Tagovailoa in the 2018 title game as the Crimson Tide trailed the Georgia Bulldogs, a game that Nick Saban's team went on to win, signaling a changing of the guard at quarterback. Hurts made his mark one more time for Alabama, though, turning the tables by replacing a struggling Tagovailoa in last year's SEC Championship Game, leading his team to a come-from-behind victory.