NEW YORK (AP) — University of Southern California quarterback Caleb Williams, the catalyst for the Trojans’ season flip, was awarded the Heisman Trophy Saturday as USC became the first university to win the award. most prestigious for a collegiate player eight times.
Williams received 544 first-place votes and 2,031 points, easily passing TCU quarterback Max Duggan (1,420).
Ohio State’s CJ Stroud was third in the voting after finishing fourth last season. Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett was fourth. The top-ranked Bulldogs will face Stroud and the fourth-ranked Buckeyes in the college playoff on December 31.
Duggan and the third-ranked Horned Frogs will face Michigan in the other semifinal.
Williams and USC were locked out of the Pac-12 championship and without a playoff berth, yet it was a renaissance for an elite collegiate team that has seen little success over the past decade.
The last time USC had a Heisman winner was in 2005, when running back Reggie Bush became the second straight Trojans player to win the award. Matt Leinart took it in 2004 on his way to the national championship.