Despite Alabama’s Derrick Henry winning the coveted Heisman Trophy, it was Christian McCaffrey who took home the Associated Presses’ 2015 college football player of the year, as it was announced on Tuesday.
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) December 23, 2015
This is the first time since 2009 that a player that won the AP college football player of the year did not also win the more prestigious Heisman Trophy. That year Nebraska defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh was the AP player of the year, while the Heisman went to Mark Ingram of Alabama. The AP also reports this is the fifth time overall that the Heisman winner and AP player of the year went to different players.
“This award is a testament to all the efforts and support of my teammates, coaches, staff and the entire Stanford football program,” McCaffrey said in a statement to the AP on Tuesday (h/t ESPN).
It’s not that much of a shock that McCaffrey took home this award considering how close the voting was in the Heisman (he was the runner up), as McCaffrey is more than a worthy winner. After all, he did set the NCAA record for all-purpose yards with 3,496 this season, breaking the mark of 3,250 set by Oklahoma State’s Barry Sanders in 1988.
McCaffrey received 29 of 60 votes from The AP Top-25 media panel. Henry received 16 votes, and Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson was third with 11. Navy quarterback Keenan Reynolds and Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield each received two votes.