Mason Named A Heisman Trophy Finalist

Auburn junior running back Tre Mason is headed for New York City after being named a finalist for the Heisman Trophy.

Auburn, Ala.--On the heels of a dominating 46-carry, 304-yard performance in Auburn's 59-42 win over Missouri in Saturday's SEC Championship Game, junior running back Tre Mason has been named one of the finalists for the Heisman Trophy along with Florida State quarterback, Boston College running back Andre Williams, Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch, Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron and Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel.

Leading the SEC with 1,621 yards and 22 touchdowns this season on 283 carries, Mason was named the SEC Player of the Year on Monday. Performing his best in the biggest games, Mason is a candidate to become Auburn's fourth Heisman winner and he said it's just a great feeling to be in the discussion.

"Nothing but a blessing," the junior said. "You've got to give thanks to the Lord because without Him none of this would be possible.

"It was a dream of mine coming up as a kid," he added. "It's just a blessing to be in that situation or conversation."

"When I heard the news, I was in disbelief," Mason added. "This has been such a season for our team and we are going to the national championship. For me to be invited to the Heisman ceremony, I am honored and blessed. I couldn't have done it without my teammates. This is an honor for all of them also."

The main cog for an Auburn attack that leads the nation in rushing at 335.7 yards per game with 46 touchdowns, Mason has been nearly unstoppable the second half of the 2013 season. Rushing for 178 yards and a touchdown in a win over Texas A&M, Mason followed that up with 168 and four scores at Arkansas, 117 and three touchdowns at Tennessee and 115 yards and a score against Georgia.

Mason runs through the Missouri defense

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Where he really put his name into the ring for the Heisman was in wins over Alabama and Missouri. One of the top defensive teams in the country, Alabama entered the Iron Bowl giving up just 91 yards per game. Mason ran for 164 and a touchdown in a big win for the Tigers to secure a spot in the SEC title game where he set a game record for rushing yards in the win.

"He's one of the best players in college football, there's no doubt," Malzahn said. "He proved that (Saturday)."

Auburn's head coach added, "This year he's really established himself as really our go-to guy and the unique thing about it is most people know he's getting it and he's run and earned some very tough yards," his coach added. "After that first contact he breaks most of the first contact and he's a tough guy."

Mason's biggest competition for the award will likely come from Winston, the offensive star for Auburn's BCS Championship Game opponent. A heavy favorite to win the award for much of the year, the redshirt freshman has thrown for 3,820 yards and 38 touchdowns with 10 interceptions this season while completing 67.9 percent of his passes. Williams has 2,102 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns on 329 carries this season.

With Winston and Mason spending time in New York this week, it could be a chance for a little trash talk between the two. Mason said that's not his style as he plans to enjoy the experience and take it all in.

"It's going to be cool," he said. "We have mutual friends so it's going to be a friendly competition. It's up to the votes. He's been doing his thing out there on the field and I've been trying to do mine. It's just all left up to the votes now."

Mason is attempting to become the fourth Auburn player to win the Heisman Trophy. The other three are Cam Newton (2010), Bo Jackson (1985) and Pat Sullivan (1971). The announcement will be made Saturday night in New York City.


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