He’s 6-foot-2, 210, in his sixth year of eligibility from Abilene, Texas. Houston quarterback Case Keenum has two 5,000-yard passing seasons to his credit, leads the nation in that category this season and already is the game’s all-time leading passer (17,537 yards), passing touchdowns (144) and total offense (18,434).
If the Heisman Trophy is considered a lifetime achievement award, how does Keenum not get a trip to New York as a finalist? At least. He has battled through a knee injury that ended his 2010 season prematurely. Barring a loss, Keenum can probably book a trip to Marriott Marquis in Times Square for the ceremony.
1. With an undefeated season, Houston would become the new non-BCS darling. The school would be the 46th ever to go to a BCS bowl in the 14-year history of the postseason arrangement.
Look what BCS status did for Boise and Utah. Boise quarterback Kellen Moore was a Heisman finalist in 2010. Utah’s Alex Smith finished fourth in the voting in 2004.
2. Exposure. If you didn’t know Keenum, you will now. GameDay is in Houston this week and will certainly yank a tear or two out of your ducts in regards to the married 23-year-old.
3. If you’re into that sort of thing, Keenum is an NFL prospect. Guys who throw for almost 18,000 yards get into NFL camps, at least. The previous record holder, Timmy Chang, did. So did the previous, previous record holder, Ty Detmer.
4. Sheer numbers. Keenum passed for nine touchdowns against Rice. OK, it’s Rice but it’s still nine touchdowns. And coach Kevin Sumlin called off the dogs too. Over his last five games, Keenum has 23 touchdowns. That’s at least as many as 101 FBS schools over that span.
5. Keenum is on track to become the most efficient single-season passer in history. His current 193.4 rating is ahead of record-holder Colt Brennan of Hawaii (186 in 2006).
6. He is fourth in both the current Heismanpundit.com straw poll vote and Scripps-Howard News Service Heisman poll.
7. Houston has its BCS scalp, beating UCLA to start the season. The Bruins are still in the running to win the Pac-12 South.
8. It’s about time. The last non-BCS player to win it was Detmer in 1990.