USC QB Caleb Williams Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

B/R's 2023 Heisman Trophy Rankings: Repeat Talk Builds After Week 5

David Kenyon

On a weekend that hardly changed the list of Heisman Trophy contenders, the reigning winner took a step toward history.

Caleb Williams tossed six touchdowns in a win at Colorado, wrapping up a terrific month in style. Washington's Michael Penix Jr. is a strong contender, but Williams heads into October as the clear Heisman front-runner.

Williams is aiming to become only the second player in college football history to earn the Heisman twice. The only other time it happened was in 1974 and 1975, when Ohio State running back Archie Griffin took home the prestigious award.

The race is far from finished in 2023. But everyone else is chasing Williams once again.

Tier 4: Hanging Around

Georgia TE Brock Bowers Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Carson Beck, QB, Georgia: Beck remains on the fringe of the Heisman discussion after throwing for 313 yards and a touchdown in a 27-20 win at Auburn. But he also has company from a star teammate as UGA prepares to face unbeaten Kentucky in Week 6.

Brock Bowers, TE, Georgia: Here comes the nation's best tight end. Bowers had nine receptions for 121 yards and two touchdowns against UAB in Week 4 and followed up that showing with eight catches for 157 yards and the game-winning score at Auburn.

Ray Davis, RB, Kentucky: Even if his stay is short-lived, Davis has demanded a spot on the tiers. He racked up 289 total yards and four touchdowns in the victory over Florida, elevating his season totals to 740 yards and 11 scores—the second-most in the country.

Tyler Van Dyke, QB, Miami: Following an idle weekend, Miami kicks off ACC action against Georgia Tech. So far, Van Dyke has thrown for 1,042 yards with 12 total touchdowns and one interception.

Drake Maye, QB, North Carolina: As the showdown between Miami and UNC looms next weekend, the Tar Heels first host Syracuse. Maye has totaled 1,306 yards and eight scores in four UNC wins.

Kyle McCord, QB, Ohio State: McCord, who's tallied 1,055 passing yards and six touchdowns to one interception, also had an idle weekend. Ohio State takes on unbeaten Maryland in Week 6.

Tier 3: In the Hunt

Penn State QB Drew Allar Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Blake Corum, RB, Michigan: As the Wolverines cruised to yet another blowout win, Corum put together a more modest performance. He rushed for 74 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries at Nebraska. Entering a clash at Minnesota, Corum has scampered for 425 yards and nine scores.

Dillon Gabriel, QB, Oklahoma: His moment has arrived. Last year, Gabriel missed the shutout loss to Texas because of a concussion. The final Big 12 edition of the rivalry headlines the Week 6 slate.

Drew Allar, QB, Penn State: We probably need to start talking about Allar's below-average efficiency, as he is 86th nationally at 6.9 yards per attempt. On the other hand, he's thrown for 1,092 yards and accounted for 11 touchdowns on a 5-0 team. Penn State is idle this weekend.

Cameron Ward, QB, Washington State: Ward has a great opportunity to ascend one more tier in Week 6 as Wazzu travels to UCLA. He's amassed 1,498 total yards and 16 touchdowns to date.

Tier 2: Top Chasers

Michigan QB J.J. McCarthy Bob Kupbens/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Jordan Travis, QB, Florida State: October begins with FSU's home ACC opener against Virginia Tech. Travis had a much-needed weekend to rest his injured shoulder, but the 'Noles don't have another open date on the calendar. The rest of the season may be a grind for Travis.

Jayden Daniels, QB, LSU: If (when?) the Tigers lose a third game, Daniels' Heisman candidacy will absorb a crushing hit. However, it feels unfair to drop him simply because LSU lost a second time in a wild, back-and-forth game. Daniels shredded Ole Miss for 414 passing yards, 99 rushing yards and five total touchdowns, but LSU gave up 55 points, too. Daniels leads the Tigers into a clash with undefeated Missouri this weekend.

J.J. McCarthy, QB, Michigan: McCarthy went 12-of-16 for 156 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions while adding 30 yards and a score on the ground. His numbers aren't overwhelming, but that's also because Michigan is very much that as a team.

Sam Hartman, QB, Notre Dame: Hartman's clutch 17-yard scramble on 4th-and-16 wasn't quite a Heisman moment, but it's certainly a bullet point on his resume. He threw for 222 yards in the 21-14 win at Duke. Notre Dame travels to unbeaten Louisville in Week 6.

Tier 1: The Front-Runners

Washington QB Michael Penix Jr. Christopher Hook/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Bo Nix, QB, Oregon: Despite a slow start, Nix and the Ducks ultimately rolled to a 42-6 win at Stanford. He notched four second-half touchdowns and finished 27-of-32 for 290 yards. Oregon is off this weekend before heading to Washington for a pivotal Week 7 game.

Quinn Ewers, QB, Texas: Ewers isn't known as a dual-threat QB, but he flashed some speed on a 30-yard run against Kansas. He ended up scoring twice on the ground while throwing for 325 yards and a touchdown in the 40-14 triumph. Ewers already had a signature game in the win at Alabama, but the showdown with OU in Week 6 brings another chance for one.

Caleb Williams, QB, USC: The bad news is Williams tossed his first interception of the year. The good news is he otherwise ripped apart Colorado's defense for a season-high 403 yards and career-best six touchdowns. USC hosts Arizona this weekend.

Michael Penix Jr., QB, Washington: Arizona provided a late-night scare on Saturday as UW hung on for a 31-24 win. Penix passed for 363 yards but didn't account for a touchdown for the first time in 18 starts at Washington.


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