Montee Ball is the surprise among the Heisman Trophy finalists. Of course, the numbers are already there. With over 1,700 rushing yards and 32 touchdowns, it’s hard to ignore the incredible running back from Wisconsin. It’s just that in a season with other players so widely celebrated and known, it’s surprising that Ball was able to break in over other players — even a wide receiver (who were not included at all in the five finalists) like Justin Blackmon of Oklahoma State.
What’s incredible is that Ball has another 200 yards and 6 touchdowns as a receiver out of the backfield, giving him nearly 40 touchdowns on the season. The 5-11 junior has saved some of his best games for the stiffest of competition, including games where he put up 150 yards on Nebraska and Penn State and over 200 apiece on Purdue and Illinois. He just had three touchdowns in the win over Michigan State last Saturday.
Last season, Ball didn’t even break 1,000 yards for the Badgers, so there’s no way anyone saw this sort of rise coming. Ball certainly deserves the mention with his numbers, but anyone who said they predicted it is either very good at their job or lying.