Haskins threw three TDs and rushed for three more in an overtime win over Maryland, while Minshew threw for seven in a blowout of Arizona.
In order to catch Tua Tagovailoa and Kyler Murray in the Heisman Trophy race, you’re going to have to do something drastic. It may not be enough, but that’s exactlywhat Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins and Washington State QB Gardner Minshew did in Week 12 after holding off Maryland in an overtime victory. Haskins threw three touchdowns and rushed for another three in an overtime victory at Maryland, while Minshew set a Washington State record with seven touchdown passes in an easy win over Arizona. Oklahoma's Kyler Murray also put up an electrifying dual-threat performance with five scores against Kansas, including a 75-yard touchdown run, the longest of his career.
As the regular season winds down, each player looks to make a big push for the illustrious trophy handed out in New York City next month.
Here's how the top five Heisman contenders fared in Week 12:
1. Tua Tagovailoa, Junior, QB, Alabama
This week's stats: Passing: 18 for 22, 340 yards, 3 TDs; Rushing: 4 carries, 37 yards, 1 TD in win vs. The Citadel
Season stats: 2,865 yards, 31 TDs, 2 INT
Tagovailoa entered Alabama's history books Saturday, breaking AJ McCarron's single-season passing touchdown record with his 31st of the year on a 68-yard Irv Smith catch-and-run in the third quarter. Despite being tied 10–10 at the half, Alabama woke up to pull away from The Citadel for a 50–17 win. Tagovailoa threw for three touchdowns and ran for another to preserve Alabama's place atop the College Football Playoff rankings.
2. Kyler Murray, Junior, QB, Oklahoma
This week's stats: Passing: 21 for 32, 272 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT; Rushing: 8 carries, 99 yards, 3 TDs in win vs. Kansas
Season stats: 3,310 yards, 34 TDs, 6 INT
Just when it looked like Murray had done it all this season, the junior produced more unforgettable highlights in a 55–40 victory over Kansas throwing for 272 yards and two touchdowns and ripping off the longest run of his career on a 75-yarder scamper. Murray cut up the left side to escape defenders before zagging up the middle to run into the end zone. Oklahoma is in the Big 12 title game with a win next week at West Virginia, where Murray will square off with fellow Heisman candidate Will Grier.
3. Dwayne Haskins, Sophomore, QB, Ohio State
This week's stats: Passing: 28 for 38, 405 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT; Rushing: 15 carries, 59 yards, 3 TDs in win vs. Maryland
Season stats: 3,685 yards, 36 TDs, 7 INT
Haskins carried Ohio State to a heart-stopping 52–51 overtime victory over Maryland in his return to his home state. After a messy first half, Haskins opened the second throwing an interception but went on to rush for two touchdowns and throw for another to tie the game with 7:50 left in the fourth quarter. Both sides scored again to send the game to overtime. Ohio State clinched the win after Haskins rushed for a five-yard touchdown and the Terrapins’ two-point conversion attempt sailed wide of its target. Haskins entered Saturday's game with only 41 carries for 34 yards but recorded season-highs in carries (15), yards (59) and rushing touchdowns (three). The win kept the Buckeyes in contention for the Big Ten title and a College Football Playoff spot.
4. Gardner Minshew, Senior, QB, Washington State
This week's stats: 43 for 55, 473 yards, 7 TDs in win vs. Arizona
Season stats: 4,325 yards, 36 TDs, 7 INT
The nation's leading passer was letter-perfect in the Cougars' destruction of Arizona in Pullman, throwing his seven touchdowns to six different receivers and doing whatever he wanted to the Wildcats' defense. If Washington State conquers its Apple Cup demons and wins the Pac-12 the following week, it will be just as hard to keep Minshew out of the Heisman ceremony in New York as it will be to keep the Cougars out of the playoff field.
5. Will Grier, Senior, QB, West Virginia
This week's stats: Passing: 27 for 48, 364 yards, 2 TD; Rushing: 9 carries, -5 yards, TD in loss vs. Oklahoma State
Season stats: 3,325 yards, 33 TDs, 8 INT
In a devastating 45–41 loss in Stillwater, Grier and the Mountaineers came close to almost pulling off a last-second win. Midway through the fourth quarter, West Virginia called the same play it used when converting a a two-point attempt against Texas earlier this season, and Grier scored on the quarterback draw to give the Mountaineers a 10-point lead. After Oklahoma State responded with two touchdowns, Grier tried to pull out the late-game heroics again, only to have his throw to David Sills V batted down in the end zone to end the game. Grier will have to match Murray and the Sooners score-for-score next week.