The Heisman Hopefuls

December 9, 2021

By: Carlos Alvarez

Good Morning,

We look ahead to the Heisman Trophy ceremony while recapping the group stage in the UEFA Champions League. Plus, Tiger returns to the golf course. All that and more in today’s edition.

Letter Rip!



The Heisman Trophy Finalists


College Football’s Most Prestigious Award Presented Saturday Night (8:00 pm ET)


The Heisman House adds one more to the mix this weekend. College Football’s top award gets delivered Saturday night at the Lincoln Center in New York. Four finalists were named this week, with one quarterback a near lock to take home the hardware. Let’s take a look at this year’s performances from the four finalists:


Heisman Trophy Finalists


QB Bryce Young, Alabama (-6000)

The Alabama quarterback led the Crimson Tide to a 12-1 record, the SEC title and the No. 1 overall spot in the College Football Playoff. The sophomore should be a lock to win the award.


Stats: 4,322 yards, 43 TDs, 4 INTs, 3 Rushing TDs, 67.9% Comp.


DE Aidan Hutchinson, Michigan (+1800)

The only defensive candidate at this year’s presentation was a late bloomer in the 2021 season. No defensive player has won the Heisman since Michigan’s Charles Woodson in 1997.


Stats: 55 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 13.5 sacks, 2 forced fumbles


QB Kenny Pickett, Pittsburgh (+3000)

The ACC’s star player boasts similar numbers to Bryce Young, but the gravitas of Alabama likely keeps Pickett in the runner-ups circle. Pitt went 11-2 en route to winning the ACC title.


Stats: 4,319 yards, 42 TDs, 7 INTs, 5 Rushing TDs, 67.2% Comp.


QB C.J. Stroud, Ohio State (+4000)

The Buckeyes’ gunslinger was a Heisman favorite for much of the season before OSU suffered two losses to bump them from the CFB Playoff. Stroud still gets a finalist nod, but he’s the longshot to win it.


Stats: 3,862 yards, 38 TDs, 5 INTs, 70.9% Comp.


Additional Storylines

NY Times: Highlights From All 4 Heisman Trophy Finalists

USA Today: Alabama QB Bryce Young Leads Heisman Finalists



Champions League Group Finales


Bayern Bounces Barcelona as Round of 16 Draw Comes Into Focus


The final matchday (6) of the group stage in the UEFA Champions League delivered the finishing touches to the fall schedule, but one more match remains. Atalanta and Villareal had their match postponed to today (1:00 pm ET) after heavy snowfall. Elsewhere, Bayern Munich shut out Barcelona (3-0) to eliminate the Spanish giants. Three teams punched their tickets to the Round of 16 on Wednesday — Benfica, LOSC and Salzburg. Here’s a look at Wednesday’s highlights and the Knockout Stage participants with one match to play.


Matchday 6: Notable Highlights

Bayern def. Barcelona (3-0)

Benfica def. Dynamo Kyiv (2-0)

Lille def. Wolfsburg (3-1)


Knockout Stage (Round of 16)

Group A: Manchester City (12 pts), PSG (11 pts)

Group B: Liverpool (18 pts), Atletico Madrid (7 pts)

Group C: Ajax (18 pts), Sporting CP (9 pts)

Group D: Real Madrid (15 pts), Inter (10 pts)

Group E: Bayern (18 pts), Benfica (8 pts)

Group F: Man. United (11 pts), Villareal / Atalanta

Group G: LOSC (11 pts), Salzburg (10 pts)

Group H: Juventus (15 pts), Chelsea (13 pts)


Final Group Stage Standings


Today’s Schedule

Atalanta vs. Villareal (1:00 pm ET)


Additional Storylines

ESPN: Barcelona Suffers First Knockout Round Miss in 17 Seasons

NBC Sports: Champions League Knockout Round Field (Mostly) Set: When is Draw? Who Can PL Teams Draw?



Tiger Announces Return


Tiger Woods to Play With Son Charlie Next Week at PNC Championship


Nearly 10 months after his infamous car crash last February, Tiger Woods is returning to golf. Woods was hospitalized for months after breaking bones in his right leg and foot. With rehab and improvements behind the scenes, the world’s most notable golfer is finally set to play again. It’ll be a long time before he returns to competitive golf on the PGA Tour, but Tiger announced his participation in next week’s 36-hole family event at the PNC Championship.


\”Although it\’s been a long and challenging year, I am very excited to close it out by competing in the PNC Championship with my son Charlie. I’m playing as a Dad and couldn\’t be more excited and proud.’\’ — Tiger Woods


Additional Storylines Tiger Woods’ Comeback Announcement Reminds Us of Golf’s World Order

GolfWeek: PGA Tour Players React to Tiger Woods Playing at 2021 PNC Championship



\"🏀\" NBA: Jokic Explodes in Overtime

Nikola Jokic had a monster night for the Nuggets in their overtime win over the Pelicans (120-114, OT). The Joker packaged a triple double with 39 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists, including 11 straight points in OT to secure the win.


\"🏒\" NHL: Avs Erupt for 7 to End Rangers Streak

The Avalanche poured in five goals in the second period and seven overall to hand the Rangers their first loss in eight games on Wednesday (7-3). Mikko Rantanen and Logan O’Connor each scored twice.



\"🏈\"  The 2021 CFB Postseason All-America Team

Alabama, Cincinnati, Georgia and Michigan will compete for the 2021 national championship in the College Football Playoff, and those teams are well represented on ESPN\’s All-America team, as well. (ESPN)


\"🥊\"  The 2022 Boxing Hall of Fame Class

Roy Jones Jr. and James Toney, who battled in a mega-super middleweight title bout in Las Vegas in 1994, headline an eight-person class elected Tuesday to the International Boxing Hall of Fame. (Yahoo! Sports)


\"⚽️\"  MLS Thriving: State of the League

Moments after giving his annual State of the League address Tuesday, Don Garber was asked how he’d feel if Saturday’s MLS Cup final were being hosted not by the Portland Timbers but by New York City FC. (FOX Sports)



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