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NCAA football betting: Alabama QB Bryce Young now Heisman favorite after dominant debut

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Bryce Young looked special in his first career start at Alabama, and now he’s the betting favorite to win the Heisman Trophy at BetMGM.

Young, the top quarterback recruit in 2020, was the backup to Heisman finalist Mac Jones last season as the Crimson Tide marched to a national title. He made a few appearances in garbage time last fall, but Saturday was our first look at Young as the Alabama starter.

He did not disappoint.

In a 44-13 victory over No. 14 Miami in Atlanta, Young completed 27-of-38 passes for 344 yards and four touchdowns. His best throw was a 94-yard touchdown to Jameson Williams early in the third quarter. The touchdown increased Alabama’s lead to 34-3, and the Tide cruised to an easy victory from there.

The oddsmakers certainly took notice of his performance. Just last week, Young was listed at +1000 to win college football’s most coveted award. After just one outing, Young is now the betting favorite at +425 as he surged ahead of Oklahoma’s Spencer Rattler.

Rattler threw for 304 yards and a touchdown and also had a score on the ground in OU’s Week 1 game, but he also tossed two interceptions as the Sooners avoided an upset at the hands of Tulane, 40-35.

Rattler had long been the betting favorite, but now he’s listed at +900. It’s obviously very early in the season and, to this point, Rattler has been the most popular choice among bettors. According to BetMGM, Rattler has received 15.7% of the bets and 23.6% of the money. Young is next at 10.1% of the bets and 15.3% of the money.

Alabama quarterback Bryce Young (9) looks for an open receiver under pressure from the Miami defense during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
Alabama quarterback Bryce Young (9) looks for an open receiver under pressure from the Miami defense during the second half Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Another quarterback, Clemson’s D.J. Uiagalelei, is third in the betting odds at +1200. Uiagalelei was unimpressive in the Tigers’ 10-3 loss to Georgia on Saturday night, though he did not get much help from his offensive line. Uiagalelei has received 8.1% of the Heisman bets and 10.7% of the money.

One of the other preseason Heisman favorites was North Carolina QB Sam Howell. Last week, he was listed at +1600 at BetMGM. Following UNC’s season-opening loss to Virginia Tech, Howell’s odds dropped to +2500. Howell threw three interceptions in the 17-10 loss.

Entering the season, Howell was tied at +1600 with Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud. Stroud looked promising as Ohio State took down Minnesota on the road, 45-31, on Thursday night. Stroud is now fourth in the odds at +1400.

Heisman Trophy odds

  • Bryce Young: +425

  • Spencer Rattler: +900

  • DJ Uiagalelei: +1200

  • C.J. Stroud: +1400

  • JT Daniels: +1500

  • Matt Corral: +1800

  • Desmond Ridder: +2000

  • Sam Howell: +2500

  • Bijan Robinson: +2500

  • Kedon Slovis: +3000

  • D’Eriq King: +4000

  • Jayden Daniels: +4000

  • Breece Hall: +4000

  • Jack Coan: +4000

  • Emory Jones: +5000

  • Brock Purdy: +5000

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