Heisman Trophy 2013: Andre Williams Vs. Tre Mason Stat Comparison

Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

#Andre44Heisman

Boston College senior running back Andre Williams is one of six finalists for the 2013 Heisman Trophy, but he's just one of two running backs up for the stiff arm trophy. Williams joins Auburn junior running back Tre Mason, who put together an incredible performance in the SEC Championship Game -- 46 carries, 304 yards, 6.61 avg., 4 TD -- to power his way to New York. As we did with Williams vs. Ka'Deem Carey / Bishop Sankey, let's see how Williams stats stand up to Mason's.

Here are each back's game rushing logs, with opponents' national run D listed alongside the opponent and sorted by rushing yards.

Andre Williams, Boston College Tre Mason, Auburn
Opponent Nat'l Rush D Result Att Yards Avg. TD Opponent Nat'l Rush D Result Att Yards Avg. TD
1 North Carolina St. 79 W 38-21 42 339 8.07 2 vs. 9 Missouri 48 W 59-42 46 304 6.61 4
2 @ New Mexico St. 125 W 48-34 30 295 9.83 2 @ 20 Texas A&M 109 W 45-41 27 178 6.59 1
3 Army 100 W 48-27 30 263 8.77 5 @ Arkansas 78 W 35-17 32 168 5.25 4
4 @ Maryland 47 W 29-26 32 263 8.22 2 3 Alabama 11 W 34-28 29 164 5.66 1
5 Wake Forest 36 W 24-10 35 204 5.83 1 @ 14 LSU 44 L 21-35 26 132 5.08 2
6 @ North Carolina 84 L 10-34 26 172 6.62 1 @ Tennessee 102 W 55-23 20 117 5.85 3
7 Virginia Tech 8 W 34-27 33 166 5.03 2 23 Georgia 43 W 43-38 27 115 4.26 1
8 1 Florida St. 14 L 34-48 28 149 5.32 0 Western Caro. NR W 62-3 6 100 16.67 2
9 Villanova NR W 24-14 23 114 4.96 1 Arkansas St. 83 W 38-9 14 99 7.07 1
10 @ 12 Clemson 51 L 14-24 24 70 2.92 0 Mississippi 54 W 30-22 21 77 3.67 1
11 @ Southern California 19 L 7-35 17 38 2.24 0 Washington St. 85 W 31-24 15 73 4.87 1
12 @ Syracuse 28 L 31-34 9 29 3.22 1 Fla. Atlantic 68 W 45-10 10 60 6 1
13 Mississippi St. 46 W 24-20 10 34 3.4 0
Totals 53.7 avg. 7-5 329 2102 6.39 17 Totals 64.3 avg. 12-1 283 1621 5.73 22

Not taking anything away from Mason's performance in the SEC Championship Game, but what immediately stands out to me is the lack of big game rushing performances for Mason outside of the title game. The SEC title game was the first time Mason even broke the 200-yard barrier in a game; something Williams achieved five times this season. Williams has as many 200+ yard rushing performances (5) as Mason has sub-100-yard rushing performances (5, with a sixth right at the 100 yard mark).

Williams also did it in one and a half less games and still managed to rush for 481 more yards than Mason this year.

Finally, before your buddy starts in on how SEC defenses are far superior to the ACC's, take a look at those national rushing defense rankings. Williams faced four top 30 rushing defenses this season while Mason faced just one. The main difference between the two candidates is that one had a late season surge to power his team to a 12-1 record and a berth in the BCS National Championship Game; the other to just a 7-5 record.

There's another pseudo "running" back joining Williams and Mason in New York, Northern Illinois senior quarterback Jordan Lynch. This season Lynch completed 233 passes for 2,676 yards, 23 TD and 7 INT through the air, but he's just as potent a weapon in the Huskies ground game. In fact, playing in a 13th game (MAC Championship) helped propel Lynch to fourth on the nation's per-game rushing yardage list, behind only Williams, Ka'Deem Carey and Bishop Sankey.

Here's the (admittedly unfair) Williams vs. Lynch rushing comparison:

Andre Williams, Boston College Jordan Lynch, Northern Illinois
Opponent Nat'l Rush D Result Att Yards Avg. TD Opponent Nat'l Rush D Result Att Yards Avg. TD
1 North Carolina St. 79 W 38-21 42 339 8.07 2 Western Mich. 120 W 33-14 27 321 11.89 3
2 @ New Mexico St. 125 W 48-34 30 295 9.83 2 @ Central Mich. 99 W 38-17 32 316 9.88 3
3 Army 100 W 48-27 30 263 8.77 5 Eastern Ill. W 43-39 23 189 8.22 0
4 @ Maryland 47 W 29-26 32 263 8.22 2 @ Toledo 72 W 35-17 28 161 5.75 3
5 Wake Forest 36 W 24-10 35 204 5.83 1 @ Idaho 104 W 45-35 23 159 6.91 2
6 @ North Carolina 84 L 10-34 26 172 6.62 1 vs. Bowling Green 34 L 27-47 26 126 4.85 2
7 Virginia Tech 8 W 34-27 33 166 5.03 2 Ball St. 94 W 48-27 20 123 6.15 2
8 1 Florida St. 14 L 34-48 28 149 5.32 0 @ Massachusetts 107 W 63-19 17 119 7 4
9 Villanova W 24-14 23 114 4.96 1 Eastern Mich. 123 W 59-20 18 99 5.5 1
10 @ 12 Clemson 51 L 14-24 24 70 2.92 0 @ Kent St. 97 W 38-24 14 94 6.71 0
11 @ Southern California 19 L 7-35 17 38 2.24 0 Akron 65 W 27-20 15 83 5.53 1
12 @ Syracuse 28 L 31-34 9 29 3.22 1 @ Iowa 17 W 30-27 22 56 2.55 0
13 @ Purdue 116 W 55-24 9 35 3.89 1
Totals 53.7 avg. 7-5 329 2102 6.39 17 Totals 87.3 avg. 12-1 274 1881 6.86 22

Again, an unfair comparison, but the thing that stands out on Lynch's stats is the opponents' rush D. Five of the Huskies' 13 opponents ranked 100+ in rushing defense this season and eight of 13 ranked 94th or worse. Basically, #MACtion. Lynch's worst rushing performance came in NIU's lone game against a top 30 run D, where the QB rushed for just 56 yards on 22 carries.

Tough to arrive at any real meaningful comparisons when looking at Williams and Lynch's rushing numbers other than had Williams played NIU's schedule this year, he may have broke the NCAA. [Smashes block, gets invincibility star]

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