The NFL playoffs are into the championship round and in the NFC, the Carolina Panthers will host the Arizona Cardinals to see who will go to the Super Bowl.
The game has a great matchup at quarterback with Cam Newton and Carson Palmer facing off, as both players put up MVP numbers this season and have strong cases for the award. Newton is the favorite for the award, but this matchup is also notable for an award that both Newton and Palmer won back in college: the Heisman Trophy.
When the two face off on Sunday it will be the first time that Heisman Trophy-winning quarterbacks will play each other in the Super Bowl era, according to ESPN. Newton won the award while playing quarterback for the Auburn Tigers, while Palmer won the award while playing for Southern California. For Throwback Thursday here is a look at the two quarterbacks when they won the Heisman Trophy:
Cam Newton, Auburn
Newton had a winding road to Auburn, first starting at Florida where he was the backup for Tim Tebow before ending up at Blinn Junior College in 2009. Newton's time there set him up to attend Auburn, as he led his team to the JC championship while putting up 2,833 yards and 22 touchdowns with 655 rushing yards that season.
Newton went to Auburn after that and he had a huge season for the team, throwing for 2,589 yards and 28 touchdowns with six interceptions. Newton also added 1,409 rushing yards and 20 more touchdowns. Auburn won the national title that season against Oregon, the first for Auburn since 1957. Newton won the Heisman in a dominating vote and also took home SEC Offensive Player of the Year and the AP Player of the year,
Carson Palmer, USC
Palmer also won the award in a dominating vote, getting 242 first place votes to beat out Brad Banks and Larry Johnson for the award. Palmer was the fifth player from USC to win the award at the time and he put up some big numbers with 3,639 yards, 32 TDs and 10 INTs that season for the Trojans while competing 63 percent of his passes. Towards the end of the season Palmer had a great game against Notre Dame with 425 yards and four touchdowns and that may have helped seal his win.