Sam Gardner of Fox Sports says Lamar Jackson put himself at the front of the Heisman race by keeping it simple all year long.
Growing up in Palm Beach County, Florida, Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson often used video games as an escape.
A particular fan of the NCAA Football series during its existence, Jackson would bury himself in the game for hours upon hours in high school, winning the Heisman Trophy with Cam Newton or Robert Griffin III — also known as Auburn QB #2 and Baylor QB #10, in video game parlance — while holding onto the far-off hope that he might someday do the same in real life.
But now that his own time has finally come, Jackson, the current Heisman frontrunner and one of five finalists for the 2016 award, is feeling more inclined than ever to dive back into his console, lest he become distracted by hubbub surrounding his candidacy.
"I try to stay grounded," Jackson, a sophomore, said Saturday in Orlando when asked about this coming Saturday's awards ceremony in New York. "I stay in my room and try to play video games to keep my mind off stuff like that. Or me and my friends, I play video games with them or go out and play basketball. But I don't really try to watch TV to see where they've got me at and stuff like that.
"That's not me," he continued. "I've never been like that."
As he did on the coaches and media's teams, Lamar Jackson headlines the Associated Press' All-ACC team.
This Philly Voice profile of Temple coach Fran Dunphy is very good.
Gonzaga is good, but Washington -- even with potential No. 1 pick Markelle Fultz -- is an embarrassment. Both of those things were evident last night.
We did a poll this time 4 years ago and 52% of Americans said they believed in Santa. This year it's 31%. 2016 really destroyed our souls— PublicPolicyPolling (@ppppolls) December 8, 2016
Raiders punter Marquette King is an American treasure.
USA Today ranks the eight best student sections in college basketball. Grand Canyon got hosed.
Congratulations to Louisville commit Russ Yeast, who is headed to the Army All-American Game.
Who's the best corner in the ACC? It's a long list of contenders. Here are some of the key numbers... pic.twitter.com/tg3lzjxqOq— David Hale (@DavidHaleESPN) December 8, 2016
Pat Forde looks at the Heisman finalists as well as a couple of other players that he thinks should have been invited to New York.
Fox Sports looks at the most famous alum from every FBS team headed to a bowl, and goes with Diane Sawyer for Louisville ... even though they note that she didn't graduate from U of L.
U of L provides the bookends for ESPN's list of the 10 best ACC games of 2016.
10. Oct. 29: Louisville 32, Virginia 25
The two-win Cavaliers were so close to pulling off the upset of the year, scoring a touchdown and capitalizing on a go-ahead two-point try with less than two minutes remaining. But Heisman favorite Lamar Jackson connected with Jaylen Smith for a 29-yard score with 13 ticks left, lifting the Cards to a 7-1 record.
1. Oct. 1: Clemson 42, Louisville 36
"College GameDay" in Death Valley. Two unbeaten division teams. The likely 1-2 finishers in Heisman Trophy voting. What more could you ask for? The Tigers and Cardinals delivered a classic, with Clemson going on a 28-3 run at one point and Louisville answering with a 26-0 run, before Watson responded with a pair of fourth-quarter TD strikes. The Cards came up one yard short, as James Quick stepped out of bounds after an 11-yard gain to the Tigers' 3 ... on fourth-and-12. These teams lived up to the hype and then some, and this remains the gold standard for ACC play this season.
Terry Rozier dropped a career-high 16 points last night in the Celtics' win over the Magic.
Cole Bentley says he will enroll at Louisville in January, which is a big deal.
Two is all you need from KV.
These real stories about Prince's life are fantastic.
Kelsi Worrell continued to do her thing last night, setting both an American record and a world record at the FINA Short Course World Championships. Here's the summary.
Worrell's 50 Fly split on that relay was INSANITY. Watch this first 25. Absolute perfection. pic.twitter.com/Vz7O8JbIOQ— swimnerd (@SwimNerds) December 8, 2016
ACCSports.com says that "what if" game will always haunt Louisville, which I don't really agree with since we now know that even if they'd beaten Houston and Kentucky they almost certainly still would have been left out of the playoff.
"I realize your son is committed to DePaul, but we turn Negative Nellies into Positive Pauls here at Georgia Te—hello?" pic.twitter.com/NCCWu23OCQ— hothot (@ULhothot) December 8, 2016
Lamar Jackson wallpapers are here.
In Louisville's three losses this season, Lamar Jackson was pressured on 48% of his dropbacks.— CFB Film Room (@CFBFilmRoom) December 8, 2016
Thanks to you we raised over $10,000 yesterday that will help a number of people in the city of Louisville has a better holiday than they would have otherwise.
Even though Rick Pitino said Anas Mahmoud would be out again against Texas Southern on Saturday, the big man is hopeful that he'll be able to give it a go.
Leadership at the time: Governor (UK grad), Fair Board chairman (UK grad), Arena Authority chairman (UK grad). https://t.co/dv1ZHda8qC— Eric Crawford (@ericcrawford) December 7, 2016
The only college football game in town this weekend is Army-Navy, and the Midshipmen have won 14 straight games in the series. CBS looks at how that's happened.
A student writer at Johns Hopkins says Louisville-Clemson was the 8th-best game of any sort in 2016.
That moment where you show up to open media availability at the College Football Hall of Fame and they sit you next to Lamar Jackson <<<— Sun Devil Football (@FootballASU) December 7, 2016
ESPN makes the metric case for each Heisman finalist.
Deng Adel appears to be finally finding his groove.
Louisville-Clemson also finds its way onto ESPN's list of the eight games that most impacted the College Football Playoff.
On the same day that Larry Bird turned 60, Indiana State stunned No. 16 Butler in Terre Haute.
And finally, Lamar Jackson leads yet another All-American team. This time it's the one from Sports Illustrated.