AUBURN, Ala. — Auburn football is five months away from the start of the 2017 season. The Heisman Trophy ceremony is eight months away. Even with all that distance, though, Las Vegas is already thinking award chances for two Tigers.
On Sunday afternoon, the Las Vegas Superbook released its opening odds for the 2017 Heisman Trophy, according to David Purdum of ESPN.
Auburn running back Kamryn Pettway opened with 30-1 odds to win college football’s most prestigious award. New quarterback Jarrett Stidham is several spots back at 50-1 odds.
— David Payne Purdum (@DavidPurdum) April 9, 2017
Pettway and Stidham have the fifth- and sixth-best odds in the SEC, respectively. Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts, Alabama running back Bo Scarbrough, LSU running back Derrius Guice and Georgia running back Nick Chubb sit ahead of them.
Pettway, a junior, led the SEC in rushing yards per game last season at 122.4. However, Pettway only had 7 rushing touchdowns in 2016 — less than half of the amount Guice (15) scored. While he isn’t injured, Auburn coaches elected to not play Pettway during the Tigers’ spring game Saturday.
“That was by design,” Auburn coach Gus Malzahn said. “Pettway’s had a very good spring. He’s been healthy and all that. It was just a coaches’ decision to get him to the fall.”
Stidham, on the other hand, played the entire first half of the spring game. In his public Jordan-Hare Stadium debut, the former Baylor quarterback completed 16 of 20 passes for 267 yards. Stidham also added a rushing touchdown.
“That’s pretty much what we’ve seen all spring,” Auburn junior running back Kerryon Johnson said Saturday. “Jarrett is a guy that when he first got here obviously everyone was skeptical — is he really that good? Is he this and that? I think he is.”
If Stidham became Auburn’s fourth Heisman Trophy winner, he would follow a similar path to the program’s third, Cam Newton.
Like Stidham, Newton transferred into the program from junior college in time for spring practice. Newton won the starting quarterback job in the fall of 2010 and then put up 50 touchdowns, leading Auburn to its second national title.