By Martin Harris
BYU”s quarterback factory is at work yet again, and Brandon Doman is stepping onto the national stage.
His performance on the field is garnering national attention. ESPN.com lists Doman on its “Heisman watch” list. The list currently has the Cougar quarterback ranked ninth in the country.
“It”s an honor to be mentioned with the Heisman Trophy,” Doman said.
Doman”s name is being mentioned with other quarterbacks from big-name schools such as Ken Dorsey from Miami, Eric Crouch from Nebraska, Joey Harrington from Oregon and Woodrow Dantzler from Clemson.
Doman has led the Cougars to five consecutive victories since taking over the starting job last season. He also has the Cougars in the top 20 of the national polls for the first time since Nov. 1999.
So far in 2001, Doman has completed 68 percent of his passes and has accumulated 780 yards in the air. Doman has not thrown an interception this season. He is leading the highest scoring offense in the nation.
Doman”s passing ability is only half the story. In three games he has accumulated 160 yards on the ground, with four rushing touchdowns.
The Heisman is not the only award Doman could be in the running for at the end of the season. College quarterbacks have two additional awards to vie for: the Davey O”Brien Award, for the nations best quarterback, and the Sammy Baugh Trophy, for the college passer of the year.
“It”s a little far out in my thinking,” Doman said. “I just try to concentrate on our next game.”
BYU is trying to gain the attention of Heisman voters through a new campaign and a new poster it is preparing to release.
The poster portrays Doman as the “Domanator.” It pictures him similar to Russell Crowe in the movie “Gladiator,” and can be seen at the BYU sports site www.byucougars.com.
The campaign”s intent goes beyond getting the attention of Heisman voters.
“It is not necessarily a Heisman campaign,” said Jeff Reynolds, BYU football”s athletic media relations director. “It is a national campaign to get Brandon and BYU some national attention.”
BYU is gaining more attention and continues to climb up the national rankings. The team started the season out of the top-25 polls but in the last three games it has climbed to No. 20 in the Associated Press and ESPN/Coaches polls.
Doman and the Cougars have had a 20-day layoff due to a bye and the national tragedy. Their next opportunity to gain the attention of the national voters will be Saturday, September 29, when they start conference play against UNLV.