Brian Lewerke impressed as a first-year starter for Michigan State in 2017, flashing both his ability as a runner and a passer. He could be due for even bigger things in 2018. In fact, Sports Illustrated’s Chris Johnson listed Lewerke as a darkhorse Heisman Trophy candidate.
Here’s Johnson’s explanation:
“Lewerke will begin his second season as the Spartans’ starting QB in a favorable position to build up Heisman momentum. Not only does Michigan State look set to mount a challenge to Ohio State, Michigan and Penn State in arguably the toughest division in the Power 5 leagues (the Big Ten East), it brings back its top three receivers and four starters on the offensive line from the group that rebounded from a dismal 2016 season to win 10 games last fall. Lewerke’s output as a runner and passer could keep him in the Heisman mix, provided the Spartans make good on their preseason expectations by staying in the playoff hunt.”
In 2017, Lewerke completed 246 of 417 passes for 2,793 yards and 20 touchdowns against 7 interceptions. He also carried the ball 124 times for 559 yards and 5 touchdowns.
Michigan State opens the season at home Aug. 31 against Utah State.