Heisman Trophy Finalists 2011: Tyrann Mathieu, The Honey Badger Heads To NY

LSU Tigers cornerback Tyrann Mathieu is a longshot to win the 2011 Heisman Trophy because he doesn't have the status of an Andrew Luck or the national media support of a Trent Richardson. And that's before you mention the fact that he plays defense.

So why should Heisman voters seriously consider making Mathieu only the second defensive-first player ever to hoist the Heisman?

First of all, his nickname should warrant a few first-place votes all by itself. "The Honey Badger" has no equal.

Nickname aside, he's also got the stats to back it up. Mathieu leads one of the best defenses in the nation with 70 tackles and has forced six fumbles while recovering five. He also has a pair of interceptions.

In the last two weeks, he has sparked the Tigers to rally from early deficits. First, thanks to a 91-yard punt return against Arkansas and then a 62-yard punt return. The sophomore has a 16.1 yard per return average.

The odds are heavily against the Honey Badger winning the Heisman, and that's before you factor in early-season troubles for failing a drug test. His prize is likely the invitation. But if there's anything Mathieu has proven, it's that when the momentum is against him, that's when he does his best work.

The four other finalists for the 2011 Heisman Trophy are Stanford's Luck, Alabama's Richardson, Wisconsin's Montee Ball and Baylor's Robert Griffin III

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