Suh for Heisman, OSU's flu problem  

October, 9, 2009

I'm here in Oxford, Miss., for tomorrow's Alabama Crimson Tide versus Mississippi Rebels tilt (3:30 p.m. ET on CBS) and I'm opening up the mailbag.

From Dennis in Omaha: How awesome was [Ndamukong] Suh [on Thursday] night?!?! Is it time to let a big man in the Heisman race?

It might be. Suh had six tackles, a sack, a forced fumble and an amazing INT; it had to wow anyone who was watching the game. Thing is, that's basically the norm for this guy. Just ask Va. Tech, who had fits with him. (How many times do you hear of a defensive LINEMAN with four passes broken up in a game?)

My colleague Mel Kiper has him in the Top 5 on his 2010 Big Board.

Suh is virtually unblockable and he does things no other DT can. He leads his team in tackles, again. That's shocking. That simply doesn't happen these days. You might as well see a 2,500-yard rusher. Last season, he was the first DT to lead Nebraska in tackles in 35 years. To have this kind of production again -- after knowing how he is the focal point of a rival's game plan -- is enough to get him on the Heisman radar.

In the offseason, I wrote about Suh; he really credits his soccer background (he started playing at age 3) for his uncanny footwork. He is such an intriguing character, both on and off the field. I think voters are going to really want to hear more about him. I had him on my 10 best players who can't win the Heisman in April, but who knows? Maybe he can get in the race. I know this -- he'll be in my top five this week because I doubt there are five better players in college football.

Of course, as is the case with the other Heisman upstarts (Tony Pike, Case Keenum, Jimmy Clausen, Jacory Harris, A.J. Green), he is going to need the frontrunners -- Colt McCoy and Tim Tebow -- to slip, but you never know what can happen.

The one big thing that'll hurt his case (besides obviously being a D-lineman) is that NU doesn't get to play Texas in the regular season. That spotlight game against a favorite like McCoy would be huge. Still, if Suh and the Huskers can show that Nebraska is all the way back, he can -- at the very least -- get invited to New York, given how much injuries have hindered some touted Heisman hopefuls.

From Ben in Houston: Odd Big 12 logic I want to run by you. Virginia Tech beat Nebraska, but it was close. Virginia Tech killed Miami. Miami beat Oklahoma. If Red River is close, and then the Big 12 title game is Texas/Nebraska, would Nebraska have any chance? I mean, no one thought K-State was going to beat Oklahoma in 2003, did they?

To see Bruce's thoughts on this question, as well as whether Chris Petersen will ever leave Boise, the problem OSU might be facing against Wisconsin and notes on the increasing awareness of concussions, you must be an ESPN Insider. Insider