2005-2006 Heisman Re-vote?

From LIFE: Bush accepting the Heisman Trophy, while Young gets slighted.

The saga of the 2005-2006 USC football season continues. Even when Pete Carroll (perhaps smartly so) removes himself from the troubled spotlight, the sporting universe still has to hear about the Trojans whom guard The Coliseum of Los Angeles County. At least this time, it won’t be ESPN touting their immortal status, but rather news reports that makes us – the non-Trojan faithful – all feel good about the athletic department’s impending doom.

As the NCAA continues to investigate violations of the USC football program, and Reggie Bush’s tenure in Los Angeles continues to be scrutinized, there has been a lot of debate about whether or not Bush deserves the Heisman Trophy he walked away with that year over Heisman runner-up Texas QB Vince Young.

If USC is made to forfeit their wins for the 2005-2006 season, does Reggie Bush still deserve the Heisman Trophy? In addition to that, if it’s determined that Bush was given monies by multiple sports agents, is he worthy of being given an award that is (or should be) about more than acrobatic flips in to end zones? What about philanthropy, good standing, academics, etc. that should encompass the characterisitcs of someone worthy of that elite title – Heisman Trophy winner.

Eyes Of TX would think any individual that is a committed team player would much rather have the national championship trophy (see also: Young) than an individual award like the Heisman, but there is no doubt in this blogger’s mind that Young deserves both for 2005-2006 season. Especially in light of USC and Bush’s apparent trangressions. Personally, Eyes Of TX will be wearing their “R.I.P. USC” eye blacks until Young gets what is rightfully his.

To use the revised voting options highlighted by reporter Tom Shatel of the Omaha World-Herald, where would you lean?

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3 Comments

Filed under Big 12, Longhorns, NCAA Football

3 responses to “2005-2006 Heisman Re-vote?

  1. The Heisman purports to be (per the trophy’s plaque) an award for “Outstanding College Football Player in the United States for [Year]”.

    So this question is less about whether Reggie deserves to lose the trophy and more about the voter’s moral compass. Reggie getting paid to go to school doesn’t change what he accomplished on the field. It’s not a PED violation. I don’t think the athlete should be faulted for taking advantage of a corrupt system.

    It’s easy for us to sit here and pretend that we would of course have taken the higher road, but the fact is, if you were in school eating ramen and living in a crappy little apartment and someone showed up with steaks and an Escalade, it would be hard for any of us to turn that away.

    Bush made decisions that weren’t in the spirit of the rules, but technically he wasn’t the one cheating. Why should we expect a stronger moral fiber out of a 19 year old athlete than from a group of older men with their priorities out of whack who should have known better?

    • eyesoftx

      All fine points, Kiefer Nandez. The fact of the matter is, however, that both Bush AND those older men with their priorities out of whack (see also: agents) cheated. When one accepts a scholarship to any instituion, whether academic or athletic, you are bound by some rules to get those monies – whether it’s maintaing a certain GPA or abiding by the rules of the NCAA. Clearly, the NCAA states that no athlete can except money from boosters or money/sponsorships from agents while a college player…otherwise they’re ineligible to play college athletics (and most go pro). Which gets to my main point…

      Both were wrong in this case – the agents and Reggie. Bush knows he cheated (or, if he didn’t know then, he knows now). Had he been honest from the get-go, and acknowledged his mistakes and transgressions, he would have been penalized by the NCAA (a la Dez Bryant) and wouldn’t have been an eligible student athlete. Thus, he couldn’t (and shouldn’t) have been the “outstanding football player in the U.S. for [year]” because he wouldn’t have been dressed in the crimson and gold for Pete Carroll’s Torjans.

      • Your rebuttal is sound, EoT (ET?), but it fails to take into account one key fact.

        The Heisman is not awarded by the NCAA, but by the Downtown Athletic Club. They are under no obligation to kowtow the the NCAA compliance committee, and while your “if” scenario about Bush’s honesty and character is true in the sense that if he had gotten caught he wouldn’t have been eligible to play, he didn’t get caught, and what happened happened, and as such, he was the “Outstanding Player in College Football for 2005” according to those who vote on such things.

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