Heard it From Hoard

Heard it From Hoard: Column 92

In the current ESPN Heisman Watch, Tony Pike is ranked 4th among the 14 names listed after receiving 10 votes from their panel of 15 experts.

Tim Tebow, Colt McCoy, and Case Keenum are the only players who scored higher.

Pike is one of a whopping nine quarterbacks on the list, along with Tebow (Florida), McCoy (Texas), Keenum (Houston), Jacory Harris (Miami), Jimmy Claussen (Notre Dame), Kellen Moore (Boise State), Todd Reesing (Kansas), and Russell Wilson (NC State).

Time for a quick statistical comparison:

Most completions: 1. McCoy 103
  2. Reesing 96
  3. Pike and Keenum 93

Highest completion percentage: 1. McCoy 71%
  2. Pike 70.5 %
  3. Keenum 69.4%

Most passing yards: 1. Pike 1,223
  2. Keenum 1,160
  3. McCoy 1,145

Most touchdown passes: 1. Wilson 12
 2. Pike 11
 3. Claussen 10

Quarterback rating: 1. Moore 175.8
 2. Claussen 172.9
 3. Pike 172.8

Of the nine quarterbacks, Pike is the only one that ranks in the top three in all five of those categories. Tebow is not in the top three in any of those passing categories, but does have the best rushing stats:

Rushing yards and touchdowns: 1. Tebow 271 yards, 5 TD
 2. Wilson 115 yards, 0 TD
 3. Reesing 89 yards, 2 TD
 4. McCoy 61 yards, 1 TD
 5. Keenum 43 yards, 3 TD
 6. Pike 38 yards, 2 TD

After four weeks, you can make a strong case that Tony Pike has the best stats of any of the Heisman contending quarterbacks. I still don't think he has a strong chance of winning, but if Tony keeps this up and the Bearcats keep winning, a top five finish is a realistic possibility.

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Look for an announcement on Wednesday that the Big East has reached a deal to send one of its teams to a bowl game at Yankee Stadium beginning in 2010.

The game is expected to take place between Christmas and New Year's and would pit a team from the Big East against a team from the Big 12.

It makes perfect sense since the Big East gets tremendous media exposure from holding its basketball tournament at Madison Square Garden, and would get the same benefit from playing in a bowl game at Yankee Stadium.

Additionally, if would be an easy game for fans from UConn, Rutgers, and Syracuse to drive to if their team is selected. It's a bit more difficult (and expensive) for fans from the other five schools, but the appeal of New York City around the holidays would be a great draw.

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It appears that the Bearcats will receive some major exposure in this week's edition of Sports Illustrated. SI reporter Albert Chen spent time at Nippert Stadium last week and spoke with Coach Kelly, Tony Pike, and AD Mike Thomas.

I'm looking forward to the arrival of this week's SI almost as much as I looked forward to the Swimsuit Issue as a teen.

I'd love to hear from you. The address is dhoard@pawsox.com.

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