Reggie Bush reinstated as Heisman winner after ‘enormous change’ in college sports

Reggie Bush has been named the 2005 Heisman Trophy winner again, more than a decade after USC returned the award following an NCAA investigation that found he received impermissible benefits during his time with the Trojans, the Heisman Trust announced Wednesday.

“We are thrilled to welcome Reggie Bush back to the Heisman family in recognition of his collegiate achievements,” said Michael Comerford, president of the Heisman Trophy Trust. “We have considered the tremendous changes in college athletics in recent years and decided that now is the right time to reinstate the trophy for Reggie. We are so happy to welcome him back.”

Bush had won the trophy given to the best player in college football after racking up more than 2,000 yards and scoring 18 touchdowns in 2005. His 784 first-place votes were the fifth-highest in Heisman history.

The Heisman Trust returned the trophy to Bush and the replica to USC. Bush will be invited to all future Heisman Trophy ceremonies.
“Personally, I am thrilled to reunite with my fellow Heisman winners and be part of the storied legacy of the Heisman Trophy, and I am honored to return to the Heisman family,” Bush said in a statement statement to ESPN. “I also look forward to working with the Heisman Trust to advance the organization’s values ​​and mission.”

The USC football program wrote on social media post, “back where it belongs. “Bush’s reinstatement gives USC eight Heisman winners, the most of any school.

The Trust said in its statement that its decision followed a “deliberative process” in which it closely monitored changes in the university athletics landscape. That included the 2021 U.S. Supreme Court decision that questioned the legality of the NCAA’s amateurism model and opened the door to compensation for athletes; the ability of players to be paid for their name, image and likeness; and the NCAA’s recent proposal to eliminate the cap on education-related payments.

“Recognizing that compensating student athletes has been and appears to be an accepted practice, these fundamental changes in college athletics have led the Trust to decide that now is the right time to return the trophy to Bush, who is without a doubt the preeminent was a college football player. player of 2005,” the Trust said.

Johnny Manziel, the 2012 Heisman winner from Texas A&M, said on social media last month that he would not participate in the Heisman festivities unless Bush got his trophy back. He thanked the Trust on Wednesday “for doing the right thing and welcoming a legendary member of our history back into the fold. There were many votes on the table for Reggie during this process simply because of the kind of person he is. I look forward to being on that stage with you in December (Reggie Bush), you deserve it.

Among others praising the decision were 2022 winner and projected No. 1 pick in Thursday’s NFL draft, USC’s Caleb Williams, 2001 winner Eric Crouch of Nebraska and 2011 winner Robert Griffin III of Baylor.

Bush had his award revoked in 2010 after USC was hit with NCAA sanctions when it emerged that Bush and his family received money and gifts from young marketing agents hoping to represent him.

The NCAA also erased 13 wins in which Bush played, as well as the 55-19 victory over Oklahoma in the Bowl Championship Series title game at the Orange Bowl following the 2004 season.

Bush was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2006 NFL draft by New Orleans, and he played for five teams in 11 seasons.

Last August, Bush filed a defamation lawsuit against the NCAA for issuing a statement to the media in 2021 saying Bush had a pay-for-play scheme. This statement was in response to media questions about whether Bush would have his statistics from his USC career reinstated if NIL payments were allowed. Bush claimed the statement portrayed him in a false light.