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Is Tennessee's Nico Iamaleava a Heisman insider tip in college football this season?

Is Tennessee quarterback Nico Iamaleava a real underdog for the Heisman Trophy?

The Tennessee Volunteers will have a new face in the starting lineup this season, as Nico Iamaleava is slated to be the team's full-time starter in the 2024 college football season. The former top-tier recruit made one start in the Citrus Bowl against Iowa last season, and expectations for Iamaleava are already high, but is he a true outside candidate for the Heisman Trophy this year?

First, let's look at his current odds. According to Draft Kings, Iamaleava's odds for the Heisman honor are +1800, which is the seventh-highest odds. So he's not necessarily the most overlooked candidate from an odds perspective, but he's still not necessarily viewed as one of the players who can take home the award this season.

Iamaleava also needs to be able to have his share of Heisman moments, and given Tennessee's schedule this season, that shouldn't be a problem. The Volunteers will travel to Norman to play Oklahoma, host Alabama, and travel to Athens to play Georgia. If Iamaleava has some big moments during those games, he will certainly have the “wow” factor everyone wants from a Heisman winner.

The next question is whether he is good enough to win in his first year as a starter. Iamaleava is talented enough to not only play quarterback in the SEC but also win national honors. While he didn't put up great stats in the Citrus Bowl against Iowa, he has already proven in his first collegiate outing that he can compete at a high level and is someone who fully understands the game of football. Head coach Josh Heupel has proven that his offense can be extremely successful with talented quarterback play and that is exactly what Iamaleava appears to be for the Volunteers.

Gambling odds are updated regularly and are subject to change. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem and needs help, call 1-800-GAMBLER.

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