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Reggie Bush loses his Heisman, sort of

Former USC running back Reggie Bush won the Heisman Trophy in December 2005.  In June 2010, the NCAA declared that Bush was in fact not eligible to play during the 2005 season, due to the receipt of cash and other benefits from a would-be marketing agent.

To date, the Heisman Trophy Trust has not demanded that Bush surrender the trophy, even though we think it’s a no-brainer.

USC apparently agrees, given that the school has decided to return to the Heisman Trophy Trust the copy of the statute on display at the school.

In announcing that Pat Haden is in and Mike Garrett is out as A.D. at USC, the school mentioned that all evidence of the careers of the two players who got the Trojans in hot water with the NCAA — Bush and O.J. Mayo — will be removed from the school, including the copy of Bush’s Heisman Trophy.

It’s the right thing to do.  Though clearly in the wrong, Bush has emerged from the controversy sparked by his own conduct largely unscathed.  Apart from simply not taking money from the men who wanted to represent him, Reggie simply could have, and indeed should have, paid back the cash without a lawsuit being filed.  Even after suit was filed, Bush could have helped USC avoid its current predicament by doing the right thing and settling up with Lloyd Lake and Michael Michaels.

But if Bush returns the Heisman, don’t count on Vince Young welcoming with open arms an award that he desperately wanted to receive.  Joe Schad of ESPN.com reports that Young has told friends he wouldn’t take Bush’s trophy, even if it were offered.

We’ll believe it when Young doesn’t take it.

Either way, as our pal Brooks points out on Twitter, the situation should make for some interesting questions when Bush host a live video chat through Eastbay.com and adidas.

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48 Responses to “Reggie Bush loses his Heisman, sort of”
  1. AllThat says: Jul 20, 2010 4:26 PM

    Reggie lost the Trophy when he tried proking Kimmie with it. Never to be seen again.

  2. chc36 says: Jul 20, 2010 4:29 PM

    If Vince was offered and refuses does that mean it would go to Leinart?

  3. wope says: Jul 20, 2010 4:32 PM

    Since he was ineligible, is USC also returning all of the money Reggie generated for them? It’s a no brainer. It’s the right thing to do.

  4. DasBoot504 says: Jul 20, 2010 4:34 PM

    More likely Bush’s parents were actually the ones in the wrong…..then when they tried to shakedown Bush for the money he told them to go **** themselves. Still don’t give a crap if Bush has to give his Heisman back or not b/c none of this actually has anything to do with his on-field performance. NCAA sucks period….everything from it’s eligibility requirements to it’s bullshit BCS system. This is PROFOOTBALLTALK.COM so slow day or not keep this shit story with the rest of the shit college stories.

  5. Deadeye says: Jul 20, 2010 4:34 PM

    Reggie Bush is a douche bag.

  6. Nate is Gay for Brady says: Jul 20, 2010 4:35 PM

    Bush could give a crap. He’s getting paid 6 million to be a backup running back this year.

  7. artielange says: Jul 20, 2010 4:36 PM

    Bush will return the Heisman when Florio’s wife takes her vibrator and picture of Reggie out of her panty drawer and throws it away.
    So, basically never…..

  8. Cleg says: Jul 20, 2010 4:37 PM

    I found the Heisman last night. I received it from a young lady in a bar.

  9. John El Way says: Jul 20, 2010 4:42 PM

    Young won’t take it because he wants a topless one.

  10. JimmySmith says: Jul 20, 2010 4:45 PM

    Remember when everybody thought the Texans were nuts for NOT drafting Bush?

  11. va4favre says: Jul 20, 2010 4:46 PM

    Reggie Bush is a dirtbag, and I can’t believe how little criticism he received from his actions. The trophy should be demanded back.

  12. db says: Jul 20, 2010 4:53 PM

    Feel sorry for all the guys who really put in hard work on the USC squad. Don’t forget to take away those millions the trophy brought to him, because if it don’t hurt his wallet, taking away the trophy won’t mean a thing.

  13. spyboots says: Jul 20, 2010 4:53 PM

    Why do colleges get trophies stripped for cheating but not NFL teams for coaches cheating?

  14. Mark0226 says: Jul 20, 2010 4:54 PM

    I heard another talking head on the radio say something similar about keeping schools out of trouble. He didn’t single out Bush, like Mike likes to do, but he said that athletes can avoid these problems by sticking with the guy that paid them. The problem arises when the athlete decides to go with a different agent/representation, so the original slimeball complains, which starts the investigation.
    So what you are recommending is that Bush should have paid LL and MM off, so USC could keep it’s pristine reputation. So, Bush was bad to take money from them (when he and his family were poor), but (once he was rich) he should have paid to sweep this all under the rug. In other words, the problem isn’t that slimeball guys are enticing young players with money and gifts or that the schools allow it to happen in front of their faces. The problem is that people found out.

  15. Butkis-n-Ditka says: Jul 20, 2010 4:57 PM

    I’m with Pete Carroll and Matt Leinart on this one: their play stays on the field, whether there was extra money in their bank accounts or not.
    Let him keep the damn trophy.

  16. Dustin Chandler says: Jul 20, 2010 5:04 PM

    money didn’t win that trophy.
    skill did.
    what Bush did was wrong, but it has nothing to do with his skill level at that time.

  17. theycallme_iPod says: Jul 20, 2010 5:08 PM

    Every college star gets something, you guys just don’t want to realize that.
    Just like the fact, that at least half of the players in the league or on something, and 50% is a very generous number, I say, there are even more…

  18. vegassquire says: Jul 20, 2010 5:12 PM

    Why can’t or won’t USC sue Bush? He had a scholarship agreement with USC that he apparently breached and now USC is punished… why don’t they go after Bush?

  19. SF Saints Fan says: Jul 20, 2010 5:12 PM

    JimmySmith says:
    “Remember when everybody thought the Texans were nuts for NOT drafting Bush?”
    Reggie Bush has a Super Bowl ring, Mario Williams has how many playoff appearances????
    That would be Zero.
    The Saints made the right decision to draft Reggie Bush and they would draft him again in a second. Without Reggie Bush the Saints would not have won the Super Bowl because he helped bring a spark to the team when they needed it most.
    Bush > Mario

  20. artielange says: Jul 20, 2010 5:15 PM

    JimmySmith says:
    July 20, 2010 4:45 PM
    Remember when everybody thought the Texans were nuts for NOT drafting Bush?
    I’m sure the Texans front office guys were patting themselves on the back about that while they watched the playoffs from home and saw Bush go off on the Cardinals……leading to the Saints’ second Championship game in 4 years and eventual SuperBowl.

  21. scra22 says: Jul 20, 2010 5:24 PM

    Why the fixation on the trophy? He performed the way he did without help from banned substances. The gifts/money did nothing to help his play. I wouldn’t want it if I were Vince Young either, because I would know it’s not really mine.
    Just read in another article that USC still has a copy of OJ Simpson’s Heisman on display. Nice.

  22. robert ethen says: Jul 20, 2010 5:25 PM

    If this came out when it should have, Bush would not have been taken where he was by the Saints. Therefore he would not have been there to help (in a small way compared to the refs) win the NFC championship game. So that should be erased from the record books. Do over on the Super Bowl, with the rightful participants Minnesota and Indy, playing. Nothing less will serve justice.

  23. nps6724 says: Jul 20, 2010 5:27 PM

    I wonder if USC returned OJ Simpson’s Heisman.

  24. Deb says: Jul 20, 2010 5:32 PM

    If this were the Pro Football Hall of Fame, I would fight to my last breath to keep Reggie Bush’s records intact because they were earned on the field and there is NO other consideration for the HoF–nor should there be.
    But this is the Heisman Trophy. It is awarded for “the outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity.” If the Heisman committee won’t recall the award, THEY need to remove the last two words from THEIR mission statement. Then their criteria will be the same as the Hall of Fame and Bush can keep his trophy. Otherwise, the award is a farce.
    If they remove the trophy, they should not award it to anyone else because no one else outdid Bush’s on-field accomplishments.

  25. CYGNUS X-1 says: Jul 20, 2010 5:34 PM

    enough florio!stop trying to rewrite history,even if everything went according to your plan in your perfect little world it will not change what happened.the games were played and records were set and erasing them will not change what people saw that year.had they busted them then maybe but 5 years later we don’t care.

  26. granadafan says: Jul 20, 2010 5:47 PM

    U$C benefited greatly from their cheating ways with millions in revenue from advertising, sold out games, TV, clothing contracts, etc. The current players are enjoying the fruits of that with nice facilities. U$C deserves the sanctions and more.
    Will Bush give back HIS Heisman statue?

  27. bob_loblaw says: Jul 20, 2010 5:52 PM

    he was still the best player in college that year by far
    does gettin paid to play determine better performance?
    usc shouldve paid lake and michaels from the additional millions bush generated for the program
    the ncaa are the real douchebags florio, why dont you attack them instead of some kid who got caught between two shysters?

  28. cadillacjosh says: Jul 20, 2010 6:15 PM

    If Brian Cushing is still the defensive rookie of the year and an all-pro, Reggie Bush is still a Heisman winner.

  29. gurnblanston says: Jul 20, 2010 6:16 PM

    Reggie Bush is just a reflection of his coach, Pete Carroll. Piece of crap opportunist. I agree with earlier comments. Bush should return the money he’s “earned” and Carroll should do the same. No chance. They skipped town and left the bag for others. Pat Haden always seemed a decent sort. Good luck to him.
    The Texans definitely did the right thing. Bush is a third-down back, punt returner who can make an electrifying play after many plays of nothing.
    At $12.1m on the cap in ’09, the Saints paid Bush $1,512,500 per TD and $14,152 per yd while he averaged a scintillating 4.8 yds per return. Awesome. Strike that pose.
    Bush announced who he is in the championship game against the Bears when he taunted the Bears on a TD pass while his team is crushed 39-14. Bush’s stats? 4 rushes-19yds, 7 rec-132yds, 3ret-10yds, 1TD (absent the one 88 yd play- not much). One play, one pose, millions of dollars, endless suckers to pay his way. Hail!

  30. cookiecrumbs says: Jul 20, 2010 6:18 PM

    Reggie should’ve settled with Lloyd Lake? hahahahahahaha. Lloyd lake was a convicted felon wannabe agent who laid out cash for Reggie and his family. Good for Reggie for taking that money and teaching Lake a lesson. Until the NCAA good ol boys – fat off bowls and TV money – pay players and settle the championship on the field, I’m glad Reggie and Pete got over gaming the system. And don’t cry for USC. They luvvvvvved them some Bush. Had they mixed in a compliance officer or two, they’d not be in this mess.
    Rock on Reggie. Who cares about the dumb Heisman when you Party with Lombardi.

  31. TylerDurden says: Jul 20, 2010 6:31 PM

    This post should be on a page you should create for PFT entitled “Who Cares?”

  32. tom coughlin's coat holder says: Jul 20, 2010 6:52 PM

    @nate is gay for brady….bush is a six million dollar coat holder for sean payton.

  33. granadafan says: Jul 20, 2010 6:55 PM

    “TylerDurden says:
    July 20, 2010 6:31 PM
    This post should be on a page you should create for PFT entitled “Who Cares?””
    Well, TylerDurden, why in the hell did you read and make your “Who Cares” comment then? Honestly, I don’t understand people who simply attack Florio constantly or post that they don’t care. The Bush story is big news because the Heisman is a big deal.
    Don’t like it? Find another story, but quit boring the rest of us with your indifference.

  34. jibfest says: Jul 20, 2010 7:06 PM

    Dustin Chandler says:
    July 20, 2010 5:04 PM
    money didn’t win that trophy.
    skill did.
    what Bush did was wrong, but it has nothing to do with his skill level at that time.
    –Doesn’t matter. You don’t play within the rules of the NCAA and this happens. Im glad they didn’t let this get away, everyone knew he was on the take at USC.

  35. numberfour says: Jul 20, 2010 7:07 PM

    give the trophy to tittyboy

  36. RebaT. says: Jul 20, 2010 7:51 PM

    Deb is on crack again. Bush is a loser. He’s a backup player now. Him banging that skank Kimmy Kard-fake ass was stupid too. She screws every man that walks.

  37. stabkoff says: Jul 20, 2010 8:35 PM

    Officialy he won’t, but he should. What a loser!
    I wonder what he scored on his wonderlic, probably twice a good as JaMarcus Russell, so that would be a 4.

  38. Levija says: Jul 20, 2010 8:37 PM

    the ncaa is a bunch of assholes if it wasnt for people like bush and pouncy there would not be as much money in the ncaa chairmans pockets. they need to get rid of these stupid ass rules where the star athletes, who generate the publicity and money for the ncaa, a cut of the money. and anyways what does he need a heisman for when he has the lombardi trophy

  39. InnocentCriminal says: Jul 20, 2010 8:44 PM

    It’s not the right thing to do. You can’t just retroactively change history! The games were played, you can’t unring the bell. They should try to squeeze some cash out of him if anything. As CYGNUS-X1 above said, if you caught them when it happened then punish them, but 5 years later it’s a bit late.

  40. rickvaldez says: Jul 20, 2010 8:59 PM

    va4favre says:
    July 20, 2010 4:46 PM
    Reggie Bush is a dirtbag, and I can’t believe how little criticism he received from his actions. The trophy should be demanded back.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Really? the trophy is for what he did on the field. What is your thinking that the money made him run faster? Players are getting paid all the time.

  41. mikemcsaint says: Jul 20, 2010 9:01 PM

    gurnblanston, all those meaningless stats are for losers. Do yourself a favor, go to a Saints game in person and sit in the endzone. Watch the defenses shift to everything Reggie does and watch as Shockey, Colston, Henderson, Meachem and the rest get single coverage because Bush is on the field. I love people who throw out yards per carry and rushing yards in today’s passing NFL. The league is about two things cash and championships and Bush has both of them. What he did at USC was wrong but don’t be foolish enough to think that he is the exception and not the rule. This happens at every FBS school in the country and probably some FCS schools too.

  42. SeriousRadio says: Jul 20, 2010 9:02 PM

    Your pal Brooks, eh? I bet he never heard of Mike Florio.

  43. bskarter4 says: Jul 20, 2010 9:08 PM

    “By the way, I don’t think it’s a statute on display at the school. Maybe a statue? My daughter makes that mistake all the time too, but she’s in grade school.”
    C’mon man! Mike’s too busy digging for “news” to worry about grammer & spell-checking.
    BTW…since this is a story about the Heisman Trophy, which is a COLLEGE football award, shouldn’t this crap be on CFT??

  44. SeriousRadio says: Jul 20, 2010 9:14 PM

    I think USC is doing all the right things to get the NCAA to reduce its sanctions. It has swept out the university president and AD who were responsible for compliance. USC has an Athletics Compliance Office, and the head football coach is not part of that office. He is TOLD by that office when his program is not complying – he is noit responsible for compliance oversight himself. The NCAA never mentioned Pete Carroll in its sanctions report for that reason. Even if Pete Carroll knew or had suspicions about Reggie Bush’s relationships with boosters, he had no direct responsibility to report it to anyone. Other people were responsible for watching Reggie Bush and USC boosters. Those critics – including Florio – who blame Carroll for USC noncompliance clearly don’t understand how athletic departments operate at major universities.

  45. Hugh says: Jul 20, 2010 9:17 PM

    Rock on, Reba T.

  46. BCGreg says: Jul 20, 2010 9:31 PM

    @ spyboots
    If the NFL took back trophies from coaches who “cheated”, then many unclaimed Lombardis would be at the NFL offices in NY.
    Jimmy Johnson admitted to doing the same thing as Belichick. There’s 3 trophies gone.
    SF (1994) and Denver were caught cheating. There’s 3 more trophies gone.
    Pittsburgh did steroids. You can’t tell me that Knoll didn’t know. There’s 4 more trophies gone.
    I’m sure Hornung placed some bets to get GB to the 1st 2 SBs. You think his connections disappeared after he was suspended. There’s 2 more gone.
    I could keep going, but it just wouldn’t matter to you.

  47. BCGreg says: Jul 20, 2010 9:36 PM

    First of all, let’s get one thing straight. Peyton Manning was the reason the Saints won the SB. Not Reggie Bush.

  48. ch says: Jul 29, 2010 2:40 PM

    It took the NCAA 6 years to come to this conclusion? Reggie earned the Heisman by playing his ass off not from the money he supposedly took. Just like he won the Super Bowl and respect for his game, by playing and working as hard as he does. The NCAA should not fine, take money, or disgrace USC or Reggie for their lack of follow-up. They deemed him okay to play and if anyone should be at fault it should be the NCAA. There are rules and regulations in place for a reason and if the enforcers of such rules/regulations fail to follow through, why down the line should people suffer. USC is wrong for ending their ties with Reggie, because Reggie gave 100% and they benefited from that. No one can question his ability to play the game as good as he does, so trophy or no trophy he is still one of the BEST!!!!

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