6. TCU QB Kenny Hill
After being deemed heir apparent to Johnny Manziel, and virtually handed the Heisman in August 2014, the former Kenny Trill endured a decline as rapid as his ascent.
Following his dismissal from Texas A&M, Hill landed at TCU — an ideal program to join to make a career turnaround.
He spent last year as a redshirt understudy to Trevone Boykin, who bounced around from back-up quarterback to wide receiver early in his college career. Offensive coordinator Doug Meacham helped Boykin grow from a man without a position, into one of the nation’s most productive and explosive quarterbacks.
Should Hill show similar progress, TCU will again contend for the Big 12 championship.
5. Baylor QB Seth Russell
Numerous factors work against Seth Russell’s candidacy. The Baylor quarterback is returning from a serious neck injury, loses his top wide receiver and plays for a new head coach — the result of a high-profile rape scandal.
Fair to him or not, the odds are firmly against Russell’s candidacy.
Should he return to pre-injury form, and the Bears contend for Big 12 supremacy once more, Russell’s handling among the Heisman-voting media will be interesting. Is it just to punish someone not implicated in the widespread allegations and successfully prosecuted of violence within the Baylor football program?
Conversely, how does one build a Heisman campaign at Baylor without it turning into a redemption story — the exact opposite kind of narrative that needs to be pushed in that climate?