Proof that Lamar Jackson’s 2017 has been better still than his Heisman 2016

1. Big Play view: Lamar edition

You know who has a pretty exciting, young quarterback you should focus on? Louisville!

This Lamar Jackson fellow, an upstart from Pompano Shore, Fla., had himself a significant game against Virginia, throwing for 195 yards and three touchdowns while rushing for 147 and another score. The Cardinals clinched bowl eligibility with a 17-point make an impression on the six-win Cavaliers.

Okay, yes, you understand who Lamar Jackson is.

But I’m uncertain we’ve ever taken a defending Heisman champion more for granted than we have with No. 8 this season.

He barely got a mention inside our own Week 11 Heisman piece, which was largely predicated on betting chances, and he’s fallen from the odds at Bovada.

Because of how exactly we have a tendency to look at college or university football, this makes sense.

For one thing, Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield has been absolutely incredible.

More importantly, Louisville has been disappointing, suffering three double-digit losses on the path to a 6-4 record. As the Heisman is extra of a popularity contest than other things, we carry that against you, whether it’s your fault or not.

Still, though, what the hell?

Virtually not one of Louisville’s problems are Jackson’s fault. After burning off defensive coordinator Todd Grantham to Mississippi Condition and exchanging him with Peter Sirmon, the protection has fallen from 19th to 98th in Def. S&P+; the Cardinals are allowing 1.1 more yards per play in 2017, plus they have allowed at least 39 points in all four losses.

The offense? It provides advanced from 10th to eighth in Off. S&P+ despite Jackson burning off his leading three receivers and three starting linemen and lining up up coming to a QB-turned-WR-turned-RB (Reggie Bonnafon) in the backfield.

Comparing Lamar Jackson’s 2016 to 2017 Stat 2016 Lamar 2017 Lamar (projected from 10 to 13 games) Stat 2016 Lamar 2017 Lamar (projected from 10 to 13 games) Completions 230-for-409 (56%) 276-for-458 (60%) Passing yards 3,543 3,903 Passing TDs 30 27 INTs 9 8 Sacks 46 29 YPA (incorporating sacks) 7.1 7.7 Carries 214 203 Rushing yards 1,896 1,671 YPC 8.9 8.2 Rushing TDs 21 18 Fumbles 8 5

He has lower interception, fumble, and sack costs and an increased completion amount, and he’s once again going to rush for more than 1,600 yards.

In the offseason, Louisville head coach Bobby Petrino made a point of making Jackson extra of a pro-style quarterback, whatever which means. We were all a head of hair worried that it would neuter the electrical quarterback. It hasn’t. Jackson has sacrificed a small amount of rushing and gotten definitively better through the air flow.

Again, he’s doing this on a team with a fresh receiving corps and, because of the horrid defense, far more scoring deficits.

The guy won the Heisman and then improved.

And we’re nearly forgotten all about him. That’s a damn shame, considering we might only reach watch him three extra instances in a Louisville uniform.

You understand, Week 12’s slate is pretty light, and Louisville hosts Syracuse at 3:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU. Think about we set aside a while to watch a guy who is maybe only the second-best person in college or university football this year? May be worth your time.

2. Give that win back

North Carolina’s 2017 season offers been … unlikely. After winning 19 games in 2015-16, Larry Fedora’s Tar Heels were nearly guaranteed to take a step back, following a departure of a number of stars. Instead, because of a crazy amount of injuries, they stepped backward off a cliff.

UNC entered Thursday night’s game with Pitt a jarring 1-8. That they had lost close games (24-19 to Miami) and blowouts (59-7 to Virginia Tech) and were participating in out the string. You can forgive them if they didn’t mind stealing an unlikely earn at Heinz Field.

On Thursday night,

Pitt outgained UNC by 93 yards and 1.7 per play.

The Panthers averaged 5.2 points per scoring prospect (first downs within the 40) to UNC’s 3.9.

Pitt dominated regarding success amount, 65 percent to 42 percent.

With field position and big plays pretty much a wash, Pitt won handily in three of the Five Factors and basically drew in the different two. Postgame earn expectancy for the Panthers, given these stats: 99 percent.

UNC won, 34-31.

What? How?

UNC got help from a kick go back. Sophomore Anthony Ratliff took the primary kickoff of the game 98 yards for a touchdown. As explosive returns are extremely random, they aren’t baked into the postgame earn expectancy formula.

Talking about random: long fumble returns! With a minute remaining in the first 50 %, UNC’s J.K. Britt stripped Quadree Henderson at the Tar Heels’ 2-yard brand, and Cayson Collins not only recovered it but took it 66 yards in the different direction, setting up an extended Freeman Jones field objective. These two returns provided UNC a 24-17 halftime business lead despite the Heels having only two drives greater than 18 yards.

The second half went by really quickly. The clubs combined for just eight second-half possessions, six which lasted at least 2:54 of possession. That minimized the consequences of Pitt’s per-play positive aspects; plus, the per-play positive aspects lessened in any case. UNC drove at least 44 yards on each get, scored twice, made two stops, and ran out the final three mins of the game.

That is clearly a tenuous recipe I really do not recommend following. But UNC deserved to own more than one win when it took the discipline that night, and quite often the universe’s program corrections have a lurch.

Per my personal postgame win expectancy measure, this was officially minimal likely win of 2017.

3. 10 least very likely wins of 2017, per postgame win expectancy

UNC above Pittsburgh (week 11): 1.5 percent UConn over Temple (week 7): 1.6 percent Marshall over Miami (Ohio) (week 1): 1.7 percent Howard over UNLV (week 1): 2.3 percent Arkansas over Ole Miss (week 9): 3.2 percent San Diego Condition over NIU (week 5): 4.1 percent Texas A&M over Florida (week 7): 4.9 percent Kentucky over Southern Miss (week 1): 5.8 percent UL-Lafayette over Southeastern Louisiana (week 1): 6.6 percent Utah Condition over BYU (week 5): 8.8 percent

We only get unlikely results in odd-numbered weeks, apparently.

4. Elon watch

Speaking of unlikely: college or university football’s happiest, strangest history took a start Saturday. Elon entered its game at New Hampshire having pulled off the strangest stability possible: they were 8-1 … with a negative scoring margin. They’d misplaced to Toledo by 34 details to start the growing season, and they’d proceeded to earn eight games – over a number of ranked FCS teams, by the way – 31 points.

The rugged Colonial Athletic Association finally swept up to the Phoenix. They were decent at UNH, but the Wildcats prevailed, 16-6. Elon didn’t score until there were around three mins remaining, and a failed two-point transformation ensured there would be no last-minute magic.

So now they need to settle for only being 8-2 with a negative scoring margin. Totally run of the mill. (Not really.)

And that scoring margin is likely about to turn far more negative without. 1 James Madison visiting this weekend.

5. Gunner of the Year watch

Out of pure curiosity, I’ve been tracking special teams tackles this season. Maybe we’ll provide a pretend award out to whoever has the most at the end. Winner of the award gets it named after him.

Here’s your fake award view list through 11 weeks:

We have a fresh tackles leader! Watch list stalwart Alex Grace, a WMU linebacker, eked past the discipline with 11.5 special clubs tackles for the growing season. The junior provides contributed to five stops on punt returns (that have averaged 7.4 yards per returning) and eight kick returns (that have averaged 18.5). Those aren’t the very best averages we’ve experienced, however in this case, quantity is also quality.

South Alabama’s Deonta Moore, long the leader on this fake view list, remained at 11 ST tackles this week, having contributed to three punt returns (8.0 ordinary) and 10 kick returns (18.8).

Your brand-new name of the week: the quickly rising Cole McCubrey of UMass. The freshman linebacker is certainly instantly up to 11 tackles himself, having contributed to two punt returns (6.5 ordinary) and 11 kick returns (20.4).

Perhaps the finest gunner from a power meeting this season: Minnesota linebacker Blake Cashman, who also offers 11 tackles and provides taken part in four punt returning stops (6.3 average) and eight kick returns (23.8).

If top quality is your thing, it remains tough to ignore Bowling Green’s Nlijiah Ballew, who has racked up 10 tackles and has allowed only 3 yards per punt go back (he’s contributed to three stops) and 10.9 yards per kick returning (seven).

Or possibly you’re partial to some other see list stalwart: EMU’s Mathew Sexton remains at 10 ST tackles and is allowing just 2.2 yards per punt returning (he’s contributed to five stops) and 15.1 yards per kick returning (seven).

The MAC: cradle of gunners.

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