Ask Matt Markey your Ohio State football questions every Monday at 12 p.m. on ToledoBlade.com in the BGSU/OSU football Web chat.
This election is a muddy mess, and so is the Heisman Trophy race. College football's prize goes to the “player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity.”
Translation: great player, good citizen. Given those parameters, current favorite Cam Newton of Auburn is off my ballot. In his previous life as a Gator, Newton swiped a laptop, then pitched it out a dorm window when the police showed up. The throw was reportedly wobbly and short, and felony charges followed. Simply relocating doesn't clear the rap sheet.
Oregon's LaMichael James is often mentioned, but he had his mug shot taken earlier this year after grabbing his girlfriend's neck and shoving her to the ground. Plea deals don't absolve sins. If you've ever stolen a computer or registered a first-round knockout of a woman – no votes – no matter how many touchdowns you have.
Ohio State has been hesitant to campaign for Terrelle Pryor, and with sound reasoning. He's very good, but not yet a Heisman caliber stud. Michigan's Denard Robinson has done more than any player in the country, but recent losses hurt his chances.
Tim Tebow made this vote easy, but you don't have to be an Eagle Scout to win the Heisman. It's just that character matters, so keep the Father Flanagan projects out. I am not Cam Newton, and I am sure he does not approve this message.