Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I've been following this story for a little while now because it would always pop up when I'm checking my email. After much controversy and investigation, player Reggie Bush is the first man in the Heisman's 75 year history to return the hard earned trophy. There has been many rumors that the Heisman committee was eventually going to strip him of his trophy some time in the near future. All of this started when NCAA officials determined that Reggie and his family accepted "improper benefits" from the University of South Carolina's athletic program while he was still in school which would make him ineligible for the trophy. I suppose this is the best thing that Reggie could have done. Instead of having it officially taken away from him, it's better to just voluntarily hand it back to end the speculations, rumors, and drama surrounding it all. Here's an official statement that Reggie issued regarding his decision:

“One of the greatest honors of my life was winning the Heisman Trophy in 2005. For me, it was a dream come true. But I know that the Heisman is not mine alone. Far from it. I know that my victory was made possible by the discipline and hard work of my teammates, the steady guidance of my coaches, the inspiration of the fans, and the unconditional love of my family and friends. And I know that any young man fortunate enough to win the Heisman enters into a family of sorts. Each individual carries the legacy of the award and each one is entrusted with its good name.

It is for these reasons that I have made the difficult decision to forfeit my title as Heisman winner of 2005. The persistent media speculation regarding allegations dating back to my years at USC has been both painful and distracting. In no way should the storm around these allegations reflect in any way on the dignity of this award, nor on any other institutions or individuals. Nor should it distract from outstanding performances and hard-earned achievements either in the past, present or future.

For the rest of my days, I will continue to strive to demonstrate through my actions and words that I was deserving of the confidence placed in me by the Heisman Trophy Trust. I would like to begin in this effort by turning a negative situation into a positive one by working with the Trustees to establish an educational program which will assist student-athletes and their families avoid some of the mistakes that I made. I am determined to view this event as an opportunity to help others and to advance the values and mission of the Heisman Trophy Trust.

I will forever appreciate the honor bestowed upon me as a winner of the Heisman. While this decision is heart-breaking, I find solace in knowing that the award was made possible by the support and love of so many. Those are gifts that can never be taken away.”

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