NCAA Football

Power Ranking The Top Heisman Trophy Candidates Through Week 13

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Heisman Trophy Power Rankings

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

With just a few weeks left in the College Football regular season, the Heisman front runners are narrowing. We can pretty much guarantee that a quarterback will win the award for the seventh time in eight years.

Three of the top five contenders currently have a chance at winning a National Championship, and four of the top five currently play for an undefeated team. Quarterbacks have really been the dominant position this year and likely will highlight the upcoming draft. The position always creates the most candidates, deserving or not.

When comparing players running different systems, what is the key factor in determining votes? Is it the teams' record, touchdown passes, or just a downright popularity contest? The award is designed to be given to the most outstanding player in college football. A quarterback that leads his team in both passing and rushing yards should receive serious considerations for being the most outstanding player at his position.

This year's award could be decided by not only on the field performance, but actions off of the field as well. Johnny Manziel and Jameis Winston have consistently dominated the headlines all season for better or for worse. They are two players that have found troubles away from the football field and could that be the x-factor in who winds up raising the hardware?

Voters should look past the school name and evaluate performance by the player and stats only. The Heisman is meant to be a prestigious award; do not tarnish it with just a popularity contest. Get the pencils and ballots ready, here are the power rankings for the top Heisman Trophy Candidates.

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5. AJ McCarron

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AJ McCarron is the quarterback for the No. 1 ranked team in the nation, yet still manages to be under the radar in Heisman discussions. McCarron has a chance to win three National Championships in four years. His stats may not be flashy, but all he does is win.

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4. Jordan Lynch

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

If you take away the school and conference that he plays for, Jordan Lynch would arguably be higher up on the Heisman Power Rankings without question. He leads his team in both passing and rushing yards. He accounts for over three touchdowns per game. Lynch also has a chance at appearing in back-to-back BCS bowl games. If he competed in a power conference each week, his stock would be off of the charts.

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3. Jameis Winston

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Jameis Winston is currently leading an undefeated team with an inside track to the National Championship Game. His first season as a starter was sailing right along until about 10 days ago, when allegations surfaced of off-field trouble. With his status seemingly on a week-to-week basis, voters may shy away from Winston as the season winds down.

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2. Johnny Manziel

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The reigning Heisman winner Johnny Manziel is looking to become just the second two time winner in history. At the start of the season, Manziel found himself in the middle of a controversy. That appears to be in the rear view window and his play on the field has him in contention for a repeat. Currently, he is the only player on this list that does not have an undefeated record up to this point in the season. Will the team record cost "Johnny Football" votes?

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1. Bryce Petty

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Squeaky clean and undefeated Bryce Petty is having a terrific season. He is guiding his team to new heights and an outside chance at playing for a title. His stats are just as good as anyone else out there. Down the stretch, he figures to get more coverage as the games become that much more meaningful. Can he perform well late in the season and sway voters to the underdog of the group?