2024 Heisman Trophy Futures, Opening Lines and Best Bets
Obviously when capping Heisman futures, quarterbacks are the belles of the ball, with signal callers taking seven of the last eight awards (Alabama WR DeVonta Smith in 2020). However, recent QB dominance is a stark departure from the early days of the Heisman, when running backs won 11 consecutive awards from 1973 (John Cappelletti) thru 1983 (Mike Rozier) until Doug Flutie beat Miami with one of the greatest Hail Mary’s in history.
When looking at the field for the 2024 Heisman, it’s important to remember there have been exactly three RBs (Alabama’s Mark Ingram and Derrick Henry, as well as USC’s Reggie Bush) to win a Heisman this millennium, with the last coming in 2015, courtesy of Henry’s legendary run.
So, it should come as no surprise that signal callers are early favorites for the 2024 Heisman Trophy on the heels of LSU’s Jayden Daniels Heisman run in 2023.
2024 Heisman Odds (courtesy FanDuel)
Jalen Milroe, QB, Alabama: +750
Quinn Ewers, QB, Texas: +750
Carson Beck, QB, Georgia: +750
Dillon Gabriel, QB, Oklahoma: +1000
Will Howard, QB, Kansas State: +1500
Nico Iamaleava, QB, Tennessee: +1500
Jackson Arnold, QB, Oklahoma: +1800
Jaxson Dart, QB, Ole Miss: +1800
Garrett Nussmeier, QB, LSU: +1800
Noah Fifita, QB, Arizona: +2000
J.J. McCarthy, QB, Michigan: +2000
Connor Weigman, QB, Texas A&M: +2000
Shedeur Sanders, QB, Colorado: +6000
With the QB-heavy nature of the award in mind, here are the players I’ve already invested in and the prices I got them at (be sure to shop around):
Carson Beck, QB, Georgia (+750)
I’ve been enamored with Beck (6’4/220) since seeing the 2020 four-star (92 247Sports player grade) prospect fend off two different elite five-star QB recruits (Brock Vandagriff and Gunner Stockton) and carve up UGA’s second team so succinctly that it reminded me of the jaw-droppingly efficient spring performance I saw from Jalen Hurts his senior year at Oklahoma. Total command, poise, on-time throws, velocity — he flashed it all. Beck was my No. 1 offseason priority in my 3 Campus 2 Canton fantasy leagues in 2023, and I acquired him in all three without having to use a first round supplemental pick. In fact, he went in the 9th round of the 2023 C2C startup I did this year, which is indicative of how Beck was valued in the C2C space. He went on to post the fourth-highest PFF pass grade in the country, behind only the three Heisman Finalists (LSU’s Jayden Daniels, Oregon’s Bo Nix, Washington’s Michael Penix). Now, with a year of high-end production under his belt, Beck is set to nuke opposing SEC defenses under pass-happy OC Mike Bobo in a similar manner to when Aaron Murray and OC Bobo lit the SEC up back in 2012. All aboard the Carson Beck Heisman-hype train. I’ll be your conductor on the journey, replete with Beck’s two turntables, and a microphone.
Nico Iamaleava, QB, Tennessee and Jackson Arnold, QB, Oklahoma (+1,800)
The performance of the “Big 5” incoming five-star freshman QBs in 2023 were a decidedly mixed bag this season. Dante Moore is on his way to Oregon after leaving UCLA for a second-year apprenticeship behind Dillon Gabriel, which is exactly what it looks like The Anointed Arch Manning will be doing in Texas behind another year of Ewers. Former USC QB Malachi Nelson is linked to Boise State, which is great for CFF, but not so much for his NFL projection.
Iamaleava sat behind the uninspiring play of QB Joe Milton this year, who shaved 8 points and 27 yards per game off Tennessee’s 2022 seasonal averages under his tutelage. Milton’s large frame suppresses his ability to scramble and beat defenders with his feet, while Nico’s rare athleticism — which he put on display in the Vols’ bowl victory against Iowa, HC Josh Heupel will be able to run the RPO to devastating effect like he previously did with Hendon Hooker en route to averaging 39.3 PPG. Perhaps the rising sophomore signal caller will need another year to hone his passing acumen, but Iamaleava’s speed, agility and athleticism is undeniably SEC caliber already. A Louisville Lamar Jackson-type campaign is his ceiling.
The other second-year, blue chip quarterback who showed out during bowl season was Elite11 winning QB Jackson Arnold. He was certainly careless with the ball and took a few ill-advised chances against Arizona (five turnover worthy plays), as is customary with an inexperienced freshman making his first career start. But he also threw for 355 yards on 45 attempts with an ADOT of 12.0 with a solid 12% pressure-to-sack rate against a surging Wildcats program. Arnold was the most reasonably priced five-star QB to acquire in CFF/C2C dynasty leagues, and now is cemented into a starting role with a stud second-year WR in Nic Anderson to throw to. Arnold wowed me watching him throw at the Elite11 Final, as I thought he was the best QB in the camp. I’m excited to see what he has in store for us in 2024.
Nico and Arnold are the two players who fit the Caleb Williams/Bryce Young archetype of second-year sensations who can take the CFB world by storm. They are both worth a shot at +1,800 to win the Heisman, in my opinion.
Jaxson Dart, QB, Ole Miss (+2,000)
Dart (6’2/220) has the Jayden Daniels/Joe Burrow/Baker Mayfield historical comps in his favor, as a four-plus year, veteran quarterback who has had to go through the fire, overcome adversity and transfer in order to realize his max potential. A mobile dual threat who ran for over 1,000 yards as a HS senior, Dart can beat defenses with his legs or his arm. Dart’s 91.4 PFF overall grade is actually tied with Beck as the top mark among returning signal callers. He also has the benefit of WR Tre Harris returning, who is quietly one of the top WRs in the nation, in my opinion. Throw in HC Lane Kiffin going buck wild in the portal, again, and Ole Miss has legitimate dark-horse national championship aspirations with the expanded 12-team field next year. I like how Dart’s career arc is trending and he’s piloting an SEC offense that should challenge the 40 PPG barrier. At 20-to-1, I love the value here.
Colorado’s Shedeur Sanders, QB (+6,000) and Travis Hunter, WR/DB (+12,000)
Michigan’s Charles Woodson is the only modern dual-threat type to win the Heisman (1997) and Hunter is in the same mold. Hunter has the “Shohei Ohtani” one-of-a-kind factor going for him, which cannot be discounted and the Coach Prime media spotlight also certainly helps, especially if Colorado improves and can achieve relevance in the new Big 12.
Shedeur and Hunter were the two most-bet Heisman futures at BetMGM last season in terms of tickets and liability, so there’s no way these two players stick at 60-to-1 and 120-to-1, considering the flood of tickets the books will undoubtedly be taking on them:
2023 Highest Ticket%
- Shedeur Sanders 12.6%
- Travis Hunter 10.1%
- Marvin Harrison Jr. 9.9%
2023 Biggest Liability
- Shedeur Sanders
- Travis Hunter
- Caleb Williams
Bet them now if you have any interest in their Heisman markets this is as good as you’re going to get.