The Clemson Tigers had to be excited about running back Travis Etienne during his freshman season. But what he managed to do as an encore performance to his first year was nothing short of spectacular. The talented runner who has a knack for the end zone has excelled through the early stages of his career and is on the national radar of college football fans.
After rushing for 766 yards on 107 carries (7.2 yards per carry) with 13 touchdowns as a freshman, Etienne was a force for Clemson during his sophomore season in 2018. He totaled 190 attempts for 1,573 yards (8.3 yards per) with 22 touchdowns on the ground through 14 games, which did not include the National Championship.
The Tigers running back quickly picked up steam when it came to future major awards. So much so, that Etienne comes in as one of the early favorites for the 2019 Heisman Trophy. As MyBookie.ag shows, Etienne is currently tied for the fifth-best odds to win the award.
2019 Heisman Trophy Odds
- Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson: +200
- Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama: +250
- Jake Fromm, QB, Georgia: +750
- Jonathan Taylor, RB, Wisconsin: +900
- Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson: +900
- D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia: +900
- Sam Ehlinger, QB, Texas: +1000
- Tate Martell, QB, Ohio State: +1100
- Austin Kendall, QB, Oklahoma: +1100
- Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama: +1100
Etienne is among the favorites to win the award which was taken home by Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray this year. The Clemson running back will attempt to break the Sooners’ run of back-to-back years winning the Heisman, as Baker Mayfield did so the season prior.
The talented running back’s toughest competition could come in the form of his own teammate, quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Clemson’s signal-caller is set to enter his second season and through 14 games as a freshman totaled 2,933 yards and 27 touchdowns while only throwing four interceptions.
Clemson Teammates Have Tough Path to Heisman
No Clemson player has ever won the Heisman Trophy before, and even when evaluating the 2019 odds, both Lawrence and Etienne will have a tall task. Obviously, Alabama star Tua Tagovailoa will remain an odds-on favorite throughout the offseason and into the start of the new collegiate year.
After all, the Crimson Tide signal-caller threw 41 touchdown passes, rushed for five more and only threw five interceptions over the first 14 games of the season. Although the numbers are from before the National Championship had wrapped up, it’s obvious Tagovailoa will receive a ton of attention for the award.
While each of the names above deserves high praise, Wisconsin Badgers running back Jonathan Taylor is also rightfully drawing attention. The rising junior totaled 2,194 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns in 13 games in 2018, which came one season after he racked up 1,977 yards and 13 scores as a freshman.