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Report: Georgia won't run a Heisman campaign for Aaron Murray

By Chris Huston | College Football Writer

Georgia has decided not to hype quarterback Aaron Murray's Heisman candidacy. (USATSI)
Georgia has decided not to hype quarterback Aaron Murray's Heisman candidacy.(USATSI)

Georgia has decided not to run a Heisman campaign on quarterback Aaron Murray's behalf, the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer reported on Thursday.

The school's associate athletics director for communications, Claude Felton, believes such methods are outdated.

"Today is a different age than the days of what many remember and what is perceived a as the traditional 'Heisman Campaign,' " Felton said in an e-mail on Thursday. "The most important things in my view are name recognition, being on television, and playing well when you are on TV. Name recognition is not an issue with Aaron, who has been around now four years.

"He's the only QB in SEC history to throw for more than 3,000 yards three consecutive years already. Virtually all our games are on television. Three of our first four games this fall are against teams potentially in the nation's pre-season top ten--Clemson, South Carolina, and LSU. We'll see how things stand at the end of September."

Murray is a senior on the verge of owning every major SEC passing record. Last year, he threw for 3,893 yards and 36 touchdowns while finishing second nationally in passing efficiency.

But everyone who isn't already a Georgia fan knows that, right?

Most likely not, which is a big reason Murray -- one of 30 players on the preseason HeismanPundit/CBSSports.com Heisman Watch List -- should get a campaign of sorts. After all, being the first player to throw for 3,000 yards in his first three SEC seasons has netted him, to date, a grand total of zero Heisman votes. Despite his remarkable 2012 season -- with all those big games on television -- he took in fewer votes than teammate Jarvis Jones, a linebacker.

For some reason, athletic departments across the country have convinced themselves that well-established methods of marketing and public relations that apply to every other product or campaign somehow do not apply to the Heisman race. What they fail to see is that the advent of the information age and social media has not changed their importance.

Far from it.

There's more information out there than ever before but it's very hard for voters to sort through all of it. Running a good, creative campaign is about finding the most salient bits of information and getting it to the right people with the proper narrative attached. Georgia at least owes Murray that much.

What good is a communications department if it doesn't, ya know, communicate?

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