Tre Mason Making His Case

Tre Mason set a school record with 46 carries and was just three yards short of the school record of 307 yards rushing in a game. His effort on Saturday, and throughout the season, lifted Auburn to the SEC Championship

Atlanta, Ga. – In a year without a discernible Heisman Trophy Winner, why not Auburn's Tre Mason?

In the least Mason stated and proved his case for a seat in New York at the Sports Museum of America when the 79th Heisman Trophy is announced next Saturday.

Mason's final chance to impress the voters boiled down to this: He carried the ball 46 times for 304 yards leading Auburn to 59 points. He even struck the Heisman pose after one of his scores.

"It's a personal goal of mine," Mason said of the Heisman. "Everyone has goals of their own. It was always a dream, growing up wanting to win the Heisman. I'm sure that every kid that played football, that's one of their dreams. It's hard to describe, the feelings that I'm having right now."

Auburn needed every yard that Mason gained. On the second to last series his 13-yard touchdown finally put the game out of reach giving Auburn a three-possession lead late in the fourth quarter. His final 14 yards gave his team a first down and a chance to take a knee after putting up 59 points.

"Well, I'll just say this, first of all," Malzahn spoke of Mason. "You're looking at one of the top running backs in college football, and he proved it again today. So usually, the best players on the best teams have a chance at it (the Heisman), and you're looking at one of those guys right here."

Auburn has three Heisman Trophy Winners in its history – Pat Sullivan in 1971, Bo Jackson in 1985 and Cam Newton in 2010. On Saturday Tre Mason surpassed Newton's school record of 20 rushing touchdowns in a season, finishing with 22 heading into the bowl game.

Malzahn's response?

"I'd say he's one of the better players to ever wear an Auburn helmet," the head coach said.

Mason's 46 carries versus Missouri set a single-game school record which was shared by Carnell Williams and Michael Dyer (41). His 304 rushing yards was an SEC Championship Game record by more than 100 yards and just three yards short of the school record set by Curtis Kuykendall vs. Miami on Nov. 24, 1944.

Mason passed Jackson's second highest output, which was 290 on the ground versus Southwest Louisiana in his Heisman Trophy winning season in 1985. Following Mason's fourth score on the ground Jackson was there to congratulate him on the Auburn sideline.

"He was just telling me how much he loves me and how hard I ran and how he's proud of me," Mason said of Jackson.

Mason also caught a screen pass for eight yards in the first half and was in on some of the kickoff return teams, though he didn't get a chance to return any. He said after the game that fatigue never crossed his mind.

"Tre wanted the football," Malzahn said. "That's the thing about him. He's as tough as anybody, and you can see that look in his eye, keep giving me the football. I was worried about him a few times on those long play drives, and we were giving it to him and giving it to him, and he was a warrior today. It was unbelievable."

Mason's name hasn't been given heavy consideration, but it's hard not to look his way after what he has done of late. Starting with Auburn's game at Texas A&M Mason has rushed for 100 yards versus six consecutive SEC opponents. He ran for 178 versus the Aggies, 168 at Arkansas, 117 at Tennessee, 115 versus Georgia, 164 against Alabama and 304 versus Missouri. He's had 14 rushing scores in those six contests.

Mason's numbers have gotten better as the season has gone along. Auburn has gotten better as the season has gone along. Auburn has gotten better the more it gives the ball to Mason.

The Heisman has turned into a quarterback-given trophy in recent years. Eleven of the last 12 winners have been quarterbacks. The only exception was Alabama's Mark Ingram in 2009.

Ingram's numbers at the time he won the Heisman were as follows: 1,542 yards rushing and 15 touchdowns.

Mason has 1,621 yards and 22 touchdowns as well as a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

Why not Tre Mason?

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