Obviously, he is getting the honor based quite a bit on the accomplishments of his team. Auburn went 12-1 and won the SEC championship, and the Tigers’ best offensive player is being honored for that.
But I believe Mason should be a Heisman finalist – and perhaps the Heisman winner – even if the Tigers had lost to Missouri for the SEC title and never made the BCS National Championship Game.
He leads the league in rushing and is ninth in the nation. He also is the SEC leader in touchdowns with 23, which is tied for fourth nationally. It isn’t important that he is first in the country, but because he’s somewhere near the top in those two categories, it shows a high level of consistency.
He needs only one touchdown to tie the SEC record of 24, set by Alabama’s Shaun Alexander (1996) and Trent Richardson (2011). That’s a significant record, and it’s a plus for Mason that he is challenging it.
Most importantly, he played his best in Auburn’s three most critical games of the season. He had 178 rushing yards in a win at Texas A&M. In the win over Alabama, he picked up 164. He went for 304 against Missouri for the SEC crown. Those are three of his four highest rushing totals this season.
Most voters probably picked Florida State freshman quarterback Jameis Winston, who certainly has played well, too. But Mason is an awfully good alternative.
Contact Anniston Star Sports Editor Mark Edwards at email@example.com. Twitter: @MarkSportsStar.