In the history of the Heisman Trophy, there have been multiple games that served as springboards to vault great players into the reputation stratosphere that is reserved for the winners of that prestigious award. Doug Flutie's Hail Mary game against Miami in 1984. Ty Detmer leading Brigham Young to an upset win over the Hurricanes in 1990. The 1991 Ohio State-Michigan game in which Desmond Howard did his famous Heisman pose that was punctuated by Keith Jackson's equally famous "Hello, Heisman!" call.
This weekend's Alabama Crimson Tide versus Arkansas Razorbacks game is being touted as having the potential to serve as just such a springboard for the Heisman candidacy of Ryan Mallett. While that is certainly a strong possibility (on Aug. 18, I did compare him to Tim Tebow), it could also be the game in which the other quarterback -- Greg McElroy -- starts his run toward college football's greatest individual prize.
If the idea of McElroy as a strong Heisman candidate comes as a surprise, it is largely because there is a misperception about just how good McElroy has been as a passer of late.