The five finalists for the Heisman Trophy have shown super-human powers for their teams this season, whether it be arm strength, speed or late-game heroics – or all three.
As such, we examine which comic book super hero they each most remind us of (feel free to call us huge nerds).
Baylor QB Robert Griffin III is … Batman
Let’s call Griffin III “The Dark Knight,” as the star quarterback does his best work under the lights – but no, Floyd Casey Stadium is not illuminated by the “Bat Signal.”
He threw five touchdowns in a season-opening 50-48 victory over defending Rose Bowl champion TCU. RGIII also threw for nearly 500 yards and four TDs and in a 45-38 primetime win over Oklahoma for the first victory over OU in school history.
Griffin has his shielding visor and own utility belt of superhero gadgets, and they come in the collective form of his freak athleticism and talented right arm that always get him out of trouble. He’s suddenly become the award’s frontrunner.
Stanford QB Andrew Luck is … Superman
Luck is the nation’s golden-boy quarterback, like a Man of Steel with a pigskin in his hand. During the week, Luck reverts back to Clark Kent as a brainiac Stanford student with a major in architectural design. By the weekend, he’s the coveted signal-caller projected to go No. 1 in April’s NFL draft.
But Luck isn’t invincible; he suffered a loss this season to Oregon. Apparently, the Ducks and their lime green unis are his kryptonite and could cost him the Heisman.
Alabama RB Trent Richardson is … The Incredible Hulk
Richardson said on Dan Patrick’s radio show that he can bench 475 pounds, so we know he’s ridiculously strong. Even more impressive? He said in the same interview that Tide trainers won’t let him attempt to lift more weight out of safety concerns.
That untapped power reminds us of the Hulk’s placid alter ego that becomes unleashed when the need arises. Watch Richardson during a signature run in ‘Bama’s season finale victory over Auburn – his inner Hulk was unleashed when he decides to punch defenders in the face instead of stiff arm them.
Richardson might as well have “You won’t like me when I’m angry,” tattooed on his bicep.
Wisconsin RB Montee Ball is … The Thing
When Ball starts his momentum downhill, as The Thing would say, “it’s clobberin’ time.” Ball is a durable hunk of rock and nearly unstoppable running back who amassed 38 total touchdowns this season at Wisconsin.
A member of the “Fantastic Four,” The Thing can be compared to Ball, whose late push into Heisman relevancy made him worthy of the award’s final five candidates. And yet, for all their accomplishments, both seem to get overshadowed by their teammates; Ball by QB Russell Wilson and The Thing by his “Fantastic Four” colleagues.
LSU CB Tyrann Mathieu is … Spiderman
Mathieu already is known as “The Honey Badger” because he takes what he wants on the field, but we see him as Spiderman for the same reason. He’s a spindly, undersized creature who bounces around the secondary and always gets the ball in his sticky fingers.
Don’t underestimate the 5-foot-9, 175-pound Mathieu – isn’t Spidey the characterization of the ultimate underdog? – who always has a nose for the ball. The lynchpin of undefeated LSU’s vaunted defense has five forced fumbles, two of which he returned for TDs, and two interceptions.
Unfortunately, our Spidey Sense is telling us Mathieu will finish fifth on Saturday.