From Barry Sanders on Down, Power Ranking the Heisman Trophy Winners

Alex CallosCorrespondent IMay 7, 2012

From Barry Sanders on Down, Power Ranking the Heisman Trophy Winners

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    The Heisman Trophy is perhaps the most prestigious individual award in sports.

    Over its 77-year history, a number of talented individuals have won the award. One even won it twice.

    Only four schools have more than three Heisman Trophy winners. USC, Notre Dame and Ohio State lead the way seven apiece.

    A recent publication from NFL Films ranked Tim Tebow No. 7 on the all-time Heisman list, which has sparked great debate in the college football world.

    While some of the winners have gone on to much more successful professional football careers than others, the rankings for this list are based solely on their individual Heisman-winning seasons.

    Without further ado, here are the Heisman Trophy winners from No. 77 all the way to the top of the list.

No. 77 Gary Beban: UCLA, 1967

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    The only thing easier than picking the No. 1 player on the list was deciding on No. 77.

    Despite receiving more than 63 percent of the votes, Beban had by far the worst season of any Heisman winner and is the only UCLA Bruin to win the award.

    During his senior season, Beban had only 1,359 passing yards while throwing eight touchdown passes and eight interceptions. He did rush for 11 more touchdowns, however, finishing with 227 yards on the ground.

    He had his biggest game on a national stage in a loss to eventual national champion USC. Beban had  301 passing yards in that game, throwing two touchdown passes and an interception while completing 16 of 24 attempts.

    He did play through injury, but this award likely should have gone to USC star O.J. Simpson.

No. 76 Johnny Lattner: Notre Dame, 1953

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    Notre Dame running back Johnny Lattner won the award based solely on the fact that he was on the Fighting Irish.

    He was arguably not even the best player on his team. He did not lead the team in any major statistical category, including passing, rushing, receiving or scoring.

    Lattner received just under 50 percent of the vote and was helped by the fact that he was a solid defensive back along with playing on the offensive side of the ball.

    He barely beat out Paul Giel of Minnesota and is still considered one of the most debatable Heisman winners.

No. 75 Gino Torretta: Miami, 1992

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    Miami quarterback Gino Torretta is the first of the modern-day players on the list and received about half of the votes.

    He did not have a bad season, but there was nothing about it that really stood out. Torretta passed for 3,060 yards, with 19 touchdowns and seven interceptions, while completing 56.7 percent of his passes. 

    Those stats are certainly nothing spectacular, and the Hurricanes went on to lose to Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.

    As a starter at Miami, he led the Hurricanes to a 26-1 record, which is something that can't be ignored.

No. 74 Johnny Lujack: Notre Dame, 1947

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    Notre Dame quarterback Johnny Lujack is another of the Fighting Irish players who may not have deserved to win the award.

    He did lead the Fighting Irish to a 9-0 record during his senior season, completing 61 of 109 passes for 777 yards. He also carried the ball 12 times for 139 yards.

    Lujack was the man behind three national championships while at Notre Dame and also was one of the best tacklers in the country. 

    Simply put, he was the best player on the best team in the country, similar to Gino Torretta.

No. 73 Eric Crouch: Nebraska, 2001

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    While he was technically a quarterback, Nebraska's Eric Crouch was more of a running back.

    He only received 27 percent of the vote and, frankly, was lucky to win the award. Many felt that Florida's Rex Grossman should have won based on the numbers he put up. But since Grossman was only a sophomore, the award went to Crouch.

    His signature moment was a touchdown catch to win a game against Oklahoma. Crouch ended the season with 1,510 yards passing and 1,115 yards rushing.

    Not bad numbers, but not Heisman-worthy in the eyes of many.

No. 72 Paul Hornung: Notre Dame, 1956

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    While he is considered the best all-around athlete in Notre Dame history, he is the only Heisman winner from a team with a losing record. His Fighting Irish finished 2-8.

    He led the team in rushing, passing, scoring, and in kickoff and punt returns. Hornung also starred on defense, finishing second on the team in interceptions and tackles.

    But his stats are not that spectacular. He passed for 917 yards and three touchdowns, completing 59 of 111. He also ran for 420 yards. His total offensive output of 1,337 yards is definitely nothing too special.

    Once again, he was a product of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and their lore.

No. 71 Pete Dawkins: Army, 1958

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    Army was one of the best teams in the county during the 1958 season and halfback Pete Dawkins was by far the best player on that team.

    For that reason, he was the Heisman Trophy winner, whether he deserved it or not.

    Dawkins did not put up any big numbers and finished the season with 12 rushing touchdowns. He was also a talented kick returner.

    The biggest reason he won the award was the 8-0-1 record his Army team posted.

No. 70 Pat Sullivan: Auburn, 1971

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    Pat Sullivan was a winner and had an excellent career at Auburn, but as far as Heisman numbers go, he is near the bottom of the list.

    During his Heisman campaign, the quarterback passed for 2,102 yards and 20 touchdowns while completing 162 of 281 attempts.

    What helped him win the Heisman was a 9-0 start to the 1971 season. However, in the biggest game of the year, he threw for only 121 yards with two interceptions in a 31-7 loss to Alabama.

    Still, he narrowly edged Ed Marinaro for the1971 award.

No. 69 John David Crow: Texas A&M, 1957

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    Had he played a full season, Crow may be ranked higher on this list. He only played in seven games and his stats were none too appealing.

    He got hurt early in the season, but managed to play through the pain for the first seven games. During that stretch, he rushed for 562 yards and six touchdowns on 129 carries. He also caught two passes and passed for five touchdowns.

    On defense, he led the team with five interceptions. His injury proved costly as the 8-0 Aggies lost their final three games of the season and head coach Bear Bryant left the team to begin his legendary career at Alabama.

No. 68 John Huarte: Notre Dame, 1964

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    John Huarte received very little playing time during his first few seasons at Notre Dame before stepping into the starting quarterback role during his senior campaign.

    He led the Fighting Irish to a 9-1 record and had a better season than the three Notre Dame Heisman winners before him on the list.

    Huarte passed for 2,062 yards and 16 touchdowns, completing 57 percent of his passes, certainly nothing to write home about.

    Still, the numbers were Heisman-worthy according to the voters.

No. 67 Billy Cannon: LSU, 1959

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    Billy Cannon was one of those players who won the award based on his performance from a season ago.

    He had a much better season in 1958, but was voted the Heisman winner for his 1959 season.

    His shining moment was an 89-yard punt return for a touchdown in which he broke seven tackles in a 7-3 victory over Ole Miss. The Tigers were trailing 3-0 at the time. 

    He was the first overall pick in the 1960 NFL draft. While the halfback could do a little bit of everything on the football field, his 1959 season was not Heisman-worthy in the eyes of many.

No. 66 Angelo Bertelli, Notre Dame, 1943

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    Like a few other winners, quarterback Angelo Bertelli had his Heisman Trophy season cut short, but not because of injury.

    Bertelli was drafted into World War II after six games as the quarterback for the Fighting Irish.

    When he was playing, Notre Dame was dominating the competition. The Fighting Irish were 6-0 and had outscored their opponents 261-31.

    He had completed 25 of 36 passes and thrown for 10 touchdowns. During that season, the Fighting Irish won by an average score of 43-5.

No. 65 Archie Griffin: Ohio State, 1975

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    Archie Griffin is the only two-time winner of the Heisman Trophy. While he certainly deserved the award during the 1974 season, the 1975 campaign was a little different.

    Griffin had a solid year, rushing for 1,450 yards but only four touchdowns. His 5.5 yards per carry was the lowest during his four seasons at Ohio State.

    One reason for the fewer number of touchdowns was teammate Pete Johnson, who scored 26 touchdowns from the fullback position.

    Griffin did rush for more than 100 yards in every game except the season finale against Michigan, when he rushed for 46, and the Rose Bowl loss to UCLA, when he rushed for 93.

No. 64 Ernie Davis: Syracuse, 1961

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    Ernie Davis was the first African-American Heisman Trophy winner in 1961. He easily could have won the Heisman Trophy in 1959 or 1960 when he arguably had better seasons.

    He did, however, rush for more touchdowns during the 1961 season. And even though he only finished with 823 rushing yards, he did score 12 touchdowns.

    Despite not posting the numbers of some Heisman winners, Davis was one of the hardest players in the country to bring down and was the No. 1 pick in the 1962 NFL draft.

No. 63 Jason White: Oklahoma, 2003

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    Jason White put up some huge numbers, despite having to run the offense out of the shotgun because of reconstructive surgery in both knees.

    He passed for 40 touchdowns with only eight interceptions. He threw for 3,846 yards and completed better than 61 percent of his passes.

    He did struggle toward the end of the season, and many people think Larry Fitzgerald should have won the award.

    Still, White had a successful senior season with the Sooners.

No. 62 George Rogers: South Carolina, 1980

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    George Rogers helped lead South Carolina to a respectable 8-3 record in 1980 as he led led the nation with 1,781 rushing yards.

    He also scored 14 touchdowns, still many people did not even consider him one of the two best players in the country.

    Georgia freshman running back Herschel Walker took the college football world by storm that season, but only finished third behind Pittsburgh defensive tackle Hugh Green and Rogers.

    Despite that, Rogers, in the eyes of many, was deserving of college football's most prestigious award.

No. 61 Doc Blanchard: Army, 1945

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    Doc Blanchard was the first junior to win the Heisman Trophy, During his three years of football at Army, the Black Knights went 27-0-1.

    This bruising fullback did a little bit of everything He was the punter and kicker on special teams, in addition to being a linebacker on defense.

    He teamed up with Glenn Davis, who won the Heisman Trophy in 1946 and was runner-up to Blanchard in 1945, to form perhaps the best running back combination in college football history.

    During that season, he rushed for 19 touchdowns and kicked an extra point.

No. 60 Leon Hart: Notre Dame, 1949

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    Leon Hart was another of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish to win a Heisman Trophy. He did so in 1949, then became the No. 1 overall pick in the 1950 NFL draft.

    Like many players during this time, Hart played both sides of the ball, serving as a tight end and defensive end.

    He also was a bruiser from the fullback position, as well as a pass-catching tight end, which was rare for his time.

    Hart played on three straight national championship teams at Notre Dame.

No. 59 Steve Spurrier: Florida, 1966

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    The old ball coach could throw the ball before he moved to the sidelines. In 1966, he had a Heisman-winning season for the Florida Gators.

    He was a two-time All American who had an excellent arm. He also was able to move around and buy time in the pocket.

    He kicked a game-winning field goal that season in a 30-27 victory over Auburn.

No. 58 Mark Ingram: Alabama, 2009

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    In 2009, Mark Ingram was the best player on the best team in the country and helped to lead the Crimson Tide to a national championship.

    He carried the ball 271 times and finished 11th in the country with 1,658 yards. He also scored 20 touchdowns, 17 rushing and three receiving, and had 32 receptions for 334 yards.

    In the SEC championship game against Florida, he rushed for 113 yards and three touchdowns. Ingram also ran for 246 yards against South Carolina and 144 against LSU.

No. 57 Steve Owens: Oklahoma, 1969

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    Even though the Oklahoma Sooners only went 6-4, Steve Owens still came home with the Heisman Trophy in 1969.

    Like many other fullbacks during his time, he was a scoring machine and finished with 23 touchdowns,  along with 1,523 rushing yards.

    Even though he only averaged 4.3 yards per carry, he was a workhorse and held numerous records at Oklahoma when he left.

    He is one of the last bruising fullbacks to win the Heisman Trophy.

No. 56 Larry Kelley: Yale, 1936

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    Larry Kelley was the second winner of the Heisman Trophy and played both sides of the ball for Yale. He was a solid defensive end and the team's leading receiver.

    He had some amazing touchdown catches, including receptions of 54 and 46 yards. His Yale team finished 7-1.

    He received a little more than 36 percent of the vote, beating out fullback Sam Francis of Nebraska.

No. 55 Johnny Rodgers: Nebraska, 1972

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    Johnny Rodgers did a little bit of everything for the 1972 Nebraska team. While his primary position was wide receiver, he also played running back and returned punts.

    He is one of the best players in Nebraska history and was one of the most dangerous punt returners of his time.

    Rodgers led the Cornhuskers to a 9-2-1 season and an Orange Bowl victory during his Heisman campaign while having some of the most memorable moments in the program's history.

    He certainly was one of the most explosive players in the country during his time.

No. 54 Clint Frank: Yale, 1937

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    Yale quarterback Clint Frank was the third Heisman winner and the second straight from Yale.

    He not only played quarterback but was also one of the best defensive backs in the country.

    When he had the ball in his hands, there were not many people who could slow him down. He had the ultimate combination of speed and passing ability for his time.

    Frank was one of the most complete Heisman winners of all time.

No. 53 Terry Baker: Oregon State, 1962

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    Even though Terry Baker only received 21 percent of the vote, he edged out halfback Jerry Stovall of LSU.

    The Oregon State quarterback was the first official West Coast winner of the Heisman Trophy. In fact, he was the first player west of Texas to win the award.

    During his Heisman season, he led the nation in total offense and had the ability to beat opposing defenses with his arms and his legs.

    Baker also starred on the Oregon State basketball team.

No. 52 Vic Janowicz: Ohio State, 1950

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    Halfback Vic Janowicz was the complete player for Ohio State. Besides playing halfback, he was also a punter and one of the best defensive backs in the country.

    He had some big games during his Heisman-winning junior season and even had the ability to throw the ball when asked to do so.

    He is best known for the numbers he put up in an 83-21 victory over Iowa. In that contest, Janowicz threw four touchdown passes, ran for two more and kicked 10 extra points.

    Janowicz passed up on football offers to pursue baseball and played two seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

No. 51 Alan Ameche: Wisconsin, 1954

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    When he left Wisconsin after the 1954 season, he was the all-time NCAA leader in rushing yards.

    As a senior, he was known as the "Iron Horse" because he played both sides of the ball and did so for virtually every snap.

    Besides playing fullback on offense, Ameche also played linebacker.

    He was a touchdown machine and was the epitome of toughness during his four seasons in Madison.

No. 50 John Cappelletti: Penn State, 1973

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    This versatile running back was also big and mean enough to play fullback. During his Heisman campaign, he helped lead the Nittany Lions to a 12-0 record.

    He rushed for 1,522 yards during that season. During his two years as a running back, he averaged 120 yards a game.

    What he may be best known for, however, is his heartfelt acceptance speech when he dedicated the award to his dying brother who was battling leukemia.

No. 49 Jim Plunkett: Stanford, 1970

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    Quarterback Jim Plunkett led Stanford to a 9-0 victory over Ohio State in the Rose Bowl, capping off his Heisman season.

    During that campaign, he passed for 18 touchdowns and 2,715 yards while also rushing for three touchdowns.

    The 1970 Heisman race was known as the "Year of the Quarterback" as Plunkett beat out Joe Theismann of Notre Dame, who finished second, and Archie Manning of Ole Miss.

    When he left Stanford, he held multiple NCAA passing records.

    He was the first Latino player to win the Heisman Trophy.

No. 48 Rashaan Salaam: Colorado, 1994

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    Many people did not agree with the selection of Rashaan Salaam to win the Heisman Trophy in 1994. They felt it should have gone to Ki-Jana Carter of Penn State.

    During the 1994 season, Salaam ran for a school-record 2,055 yards and also finished with 24 touchdowns. He led Colorado to an 11-1 record and was only the fourth running back to amass 2,000 yards in a season.

    His biggest game came in a 34-31 victory over Texas. He totaled 362 yards of total offense, including 317 on the ground.

No. 47 Frank Sinkwich: Georgia, 1942

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    After leading the nation in rushing in 1941 with 1,103 yards, Sinkwich followed that up with a Heisman campaign in 1942.

    During that season, the talented Sinkwich played quarterback and running back. He rushed for 17 touchdowns, which was an incredible number for the time, and also threw for 10 touchdowns en route to leading the Bulldogs to an 11-1 season and a victory over UCLA in the 1943 Rose Bowl.

    Like many players from his time, he could do a little bit of everything on the football field.

No. 46 Chris Weinke: Florida State, 2000

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    After seven seasons of minor league baseball, quarterback Chris Weinke played four years as a quarterback for the Florida State Seminoles.

    His senior campaign in 2000 was the best season in Florida State history for a quarterback. He passed for 4,167 yards and 34 touchdowns on his way to claiming the Heisman Trophy.

    At 28, he is the oldest Heisman Trophy winner of all time. Had he been younger, he likely would have gotten more votes than the nearly 59 percent he received.

No. 45 Mike Garrett: USC, 1965

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    Mike Garrett was the first of the talented USC running backs to come along. During the 1965 season, he led the country with 1,440 yards on 267 carries with 13 touchdowns.

    The running back did a little bit of everything.  He caught 36 passes, returned 43 punts and 30 kickoffs and threw six passes, two for touchdowns.

    He was the first of five USC running backs who would win the Heisman Trophy, along with two more who were runners-up.

No. 44 Jay Berwanger: Chicago, 1935

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    Jay Berwanger was the first Heisman Trophy winner and had quite a season in 1935.

    Known as the "one-man football team," Berwanger was a halfback who finished with 1,839 yards of offense and was also the best defensive back in the country.

    He defeated Illinois by himself, returning a punt 49 yards and to the one-yard line and running the next play in for a touchdown, before kicking the extra point en route to a 7-6 victory.

    In 1936, he became the first player selected in the NFL draft.

No. 43 Charlie Ward: Florida State, 1993

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    In 1993, quarterback Charlie Ward had the second-highest margin of victory in the history of the Heisman, defeating quarterback Heath Shuler of Tennessee.

    In leading the Seminoles to the national championship, Ward put up some huge numbers during his senior season. He passed for 3,032 yards and 27 touchdowns, with only four interceptions, while completing nearly 70 percent of his 380 attempts.

    Ward was an all-around athlete in college who had a successful career in the NBA after being drafted in the first round by the New York Knicks.

No. 42 Les Horvath: Ohio State, 1944

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    Les Horvath had the second-lowest vote total of any Heisman Trophy winner, garnering only 18 percent of the vote.

    After graduating from Ohio State and moving on to dental school, Horvath was asked to come back to the team for a fourth year of eligibility, which was allowed during the wartime years.

    He had a Heisman-winning season in that extra year. Horvath was a quarterback who doubled as a running back.

    He rushed for 924 yards and helped lead the Buckeyes to an unbeaten season. He was also one of the team's top tacklers.

    Horvath beat out halfback Glenn Davis of Army, who averaged 11.1 yards a carry but was only a sophomore.

No. 41 Tom Harmon: Michigan, 1940

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    Tom Harmon was a halfback who could also throw the football a little bit.

    He played both ways. During his career, there were eight games in which he played all 60 minutes.

    During his senior season, Harmon led the Wolverines to a 40–0 victory over Ohio State, scoring three rushing and two passing touchdowns, kicking four extra points, intercepting three passes, and punting three times for an average of 50 yards.

    Harmon became the first overall pick in the 1941 NFL draft.

No. 40 Matt Leinart: USC, 2004

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    Quarterback Matt Leinart helped lead one of the best teams in college football history during the 2004 season and picked up a Heisman Trophy in the process.

    He threw for 3,322 yards, with 33 touchdowns and only six interceptions, in leading the Trojans to a victory over Oklahoma in the BCS national championship game.

    In what was one of the most competitive fields in the history of the Heisman, Leinert edged out Adrian Peterson of Oklahoma while receiving nearly 48 percent of the vote.

    As a senior, Leinert finished third in the balloting the following season.

No. 39 Bruce Smith: Minnesota, 1941

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    Bruce Smith was the star halfback for the undefeated Minnesota Gophers during the 1941 season.

    He received the Heisman Trophy two days after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

    The highlight of the season was the finale against Iowa. The game ended up being for the national title. Smith was supposed to miss the game with a knee injury, but he made it to the field and helped lead the Gophers to a 34-13 victory.

No. 38 Dick Kazmaier: Princeton, 1951

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    Running back Dick Kazmaier was by far the best offensive player in the country during the 1951 season, leading the nation in total offense.

    He not only played running back out of the single-wing formation but also quarterback. The ball was always in his hands on offense.

    Kazmaier had his biggest game of the season against Cornell. During that matchup, he completed 15 of 17 passes for 236 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran for 124 yards and two touchdowns.

    He received more than 60 percent of the Heisman vote.

No. 37 Nile Kinnick: Iowa, 1939

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    The star halfback could also throw the football and helped lead the Hawkeyes to a 6-1-1 record and a top-10 ranking in the final AP poll.

    Kinnick threw for 638 yards and 11 touchdowns on only 31 passes and ran for 374 yards. Iowa only scored 19 touchdowns all season and he was in the middle of 16 of them.

    He was the Iron Man, playing 402 of 420 minutes, before suffering a shoulder injury. He still holds six school records at Iowa.

No. 36 Glenn Davis: Army, 1946

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    Despite averaging 11.5 yards a carry as a sophomore in 1945, he was runner-up in the Heisman voting to teammate Doc Blanchard. That is still a college record for a single season.

    Davis not only played halfback but also on the defensive side of the ball as well. During his Heisman season, he averaged 58 minutes a game.

    Known as a home-run hitter for his speed to the outside, he averaged a touchdown every nine times he touched the ball.

No. 35 Vinny Testaverde: Miami, 1986

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    Vinny Testaverde was excellent during his senior campaign, helping lead the Hurricanes to the national championship game and winning a Heisman Trophy in the process.

    He passed for 2,557 yards while completing 63 percent of his passes. He threw for 26 touchdowns and had only nine interceptions.

    He threw for four touchdowns against No. 1 Oklahoma in the regular season and benefited from the fact that the Heisman is decided before the bowl game

    During what ended up being the national championship game, he threw five interceptions in a 14-10 loss to Penn State in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl.

No. 34 Charles White: USC, 1979

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    When it comes to workhorses, no Heisman winner was more of one than Charles White. In 1979, he carried the ball 293 times for 1,803 yards and 18 touchdowns.

    White averaged an astounding 194 yards a game for a USC team that went 10-0-1.

    In the biggest game of the season against Notre Dame, White carried the ball 44 times for 261 yards in the 42-23 victory.

No. 33 Billy Vessels: Oklahoma, 1952

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    While leading the Oklahoma Sooners to an 8-1-1 season, halfback Billy Vessels ran for 1,078 yards and 18 touchdowns during a 10-game season. In seven of those games, he rushed for more than 100 yards.

    He became the first of five Sooners to win the Heisman Trophy. Vessels also helped lead the team to the national championship.

    He received the least support of any Heisman winner, getting only 14 percent of the vote.

No. 32 Archie Griffin: Ohio State, 1974

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    While some people could argue the selection of running back Archie Griffin for the 1975 Heisman Trophy, nobody could say anything about his first selection in 1974.

    During the 1974 season, Griffin rushed for 1,695 yards and 12 touchdowns on 256 carries. Those number were good for an average of 6.6 yards per carry.

    He rushed for more than 110 yards in every regular-season game and defeated Anthony Davis of USC by more than 1,100 voting points in one of the biggest Heisman landslides ever.

    This was the first of Griffin's two Heisman Trophies.

No. 31 Ron Dayne: Wisconsin, 1999

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    During the 1999 season, running back Ron Dayne became the all-time leading rusher in college football history.

    He ran for more than 200 yards in four games and was a model of consistency.

    With the Rose Bowl victory included, Dayne rushed for 2,034 yards while averaging more than six yards per carry.

    Dayne was a bruising back who was as hard to bring down as anybody in the country during his four dominant seasons at Wisconsin.

No. 30 Joe Bellino: Navy, 1960

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    This tiny halfback stood only 5'9" and weighed 181 pounds, but was a beast when the ball was in his hands.

    During his senior season in 1960, he rushed for 834 yards and 13 touchdowns. He also caught 15 passes for 264 yards and three touchdowns.

    Bellino, who passed for two touchdowns, could also beat teams with his arm.

    He averaged more than 47 yards a punt and also returned kicks and punts while leading Navy to a 9-1 record and an Orange Bowl berth.

No. 29 Billy Sims: Oklahoma, 1978

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    Running back Billy Sims had a dominant junior season, averaging 7.6 yards a carry on his way to the Heisman Trophy.

    There were players who had much better Heisman seasons, but few were as big of a home-run threat as Sims.

    He finished with 1,762 yards and 20 touchdowns. With the Orange Bowl game included, he led the nation in rushing with 1,896 yards and 22 touchdowns.

    Sims was a threat to go the distance every time he touched the ball.

No. 28 Howard Cassady: Ohio State, 1955

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    In an era when big numbers were not put up very often, halfback Howard Cassady made a big splash for the Ohio State Buckeyes.

    He rushed for 958 yards and 15 touchdowns and was one of the most complete players in the country.

    While he was excellent on offense, Cassady may have been even better on defense. There was never a pass completed on him during his four seasons as a defensive back.

    His margin of victory in the Heisman balloting was the largest of the time.

No. 27 Tim Brown: Notre Dame, 1987

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    In winning the Heisman Trophy in 1987, Tim Brown did much more than his stats would suggest.

    He caught 39 passes for 846 yards and three touchdowns while averaging 21,7 yards a catch. He also carried the ball 34 times for 144 yards and a touchdown, and returned three punts for touchdowns.

    But he was a threat to score every time he touched the ball.

    Brown received just less than 46 percent of the Heisman vote.

No. 26 Eddie George: Ohio State, 1995

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    When Ohio State had the ball in 1995, it was likely in the hands of Eddie George. 

    The bruising running back carried it 328 times for 1,927 yards and 24 touchdowns. He also caught 44 passes for 399 yards and a touchdown.

    The running back ran for 314 yards against Illinois and averaged 152 yards a game for the season while going over 100 in 11 straight games.

    George ran for at least 99 yards in every game.

No. 25 Carson Palmer: USC, 2002

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    Carson Palmer had a dominant senior season on his way to another Heisman Trophy for USC.

    He passed for 3,942 yards and 33 touchdowns, and only threw 10 interceptions. Palmer also ran for four scores.

    When USC had the ball, the Trojans seemed to be always throwing it. Palmer passed it nearly 500 times while completing over 63 percent of his throws.

    He received 48 percent of the Heisman vote.

No. 24 Roger Staubach: Navy, 1963

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    Roger Staubach did not put up huge passing numbers, but he was the most efficient player in the country.

    During his Heisman-winning season in 1963, he passed for 1,474 yards with seven touchdowns and six interceptions, while completing better than 66 percent of his passes during the regular season. 

    He received more than 55 percent of the vote, narrowly defeating quarterback Billy Lothridge of Georgia Tech.

No. 23 Doak Walker: SMU, 1948

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    Doak Walker not only has an award named after him but also won a Heisman Trophy as a halfback in 1948.

    He did not post huge numbers during his junior Heisman season, rushing for eight touchdowns and 532 yards. Walker also had 14 catches for 264 yards.

    His impact was also felt on defense and special teams. Walker excelled as a kicker on special teams and as a defensive back.

    Walker received more than 58 percent of the Heisman vote.

No. 22 Earl Campbell: Texas, 1977

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    Running back Earl Campbell put up solid Heisman numbers during his senior season, leading the country in rushing with 1,744 yards and 18 touchdowns. He also caught five passes for 111 yards and a touchdown.

    Perhaps the most impressive stat of Campbell's during his Heisman season is his average of 6.5 yards per carry.

    Campbell received just less than 50 percent of the Heisman vote.

No. 21 Robert Griffin III: Baylor, 2011

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    Robert Griffin III had a passer rating of 192.31, which is the best in the history of college football.

    He could do a little bit of everything. Griffin passed for 4,293 yards and 37 touchdowns with only six interceptions.

    When he wasn't passing, he could beat teams with his feet. He rushed for 699 yards and 10 touchdowns.

    Had his Baylor squad been a little more successful, Griffin would be higher on the list.

No. 20 Desmond Howard: Michigan, 1991

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    Desmond Howard was an explosive wide receiver and kick returner during his 1991 Heisman campaign.

    He led the Big Ten in scoring with 138 points, becoming the first receiver to do so. At the time of the balloting, he had the largest margin of victory of any Heisman winner, garnering 85 percent of the first-place votes.

    He only had 61 catches and 950 yards, but what stood out were the 19 receiving touchdowns. He also scored two rushing touchdowns, one on a punt return and another on a kickoff return.

    Howard was one of the most explosive players in college football history.

No. 19 Troy Smith: Ohio State, 2006

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    With the exception of Reggie Bush whose Heisman Trophy has since been vacated, Troy Smith received a higher percentage of the vote than anybody. The nearly 92 percent he received is monumental.

    Smith led Ohio State to an undefeated regular season and a berth in the BCS national championship game. 

    Smith, who was a threat to run the ball, completed 203 of 311 passes for 2,542 yards and 30 touchdowns with only six interceptions.

    He was the leader of a talented Ohio State squad.

No. 18 Sam Bradford: Oklahoma, 2008

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    Sam Bradford led an Oklahoma offense in 2008 that was the highest scoring in college football history, amassing 702 points.

    A year after Tim Tebow became the first sophomore to win the award, Bradford became the second.

    He passed for 4,720 yards with an amazing 50 touchdowns and only eight interceptions while completing nearly 68 percent of his passes.

    The touchdown passes were a single-season college football record. Statistically, his was one of the best Heisman seasons of all time.

    Bradford edged out Colt McCoy and Tim Tebow in a tight race for the award.

No. 17 Charles Woodson: Michigan, 1997

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    Charles Woodson remains the only Heisman winner whose primary position was defense.

    What set Woodson apart, however, was not just the fact that he was the best cornerback in the country, but that he also played a little offense and special teams.

    During his Heisman campaign in 1997, the defensive back returned one punt for a touchdown, caught 11 passes for 231 yards and two touchdowns, and also ran for a touchdown.

    He also led Michigan to the national championship, something that would not have been possible without him.

No. 16 Andre Ware: Houston, 1989

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    Statistically speaking, no Heisman winner with the exception of maybe one did what Andre Ware did in 1989 at Houston.

    The Cougars loved to throw the ball and Ware was a quarterback who could do just that. He threw 578 passes during the season, completing 365 of them, a completion percentage of better than 63 percent.

    He passed for 4,699 yards, with 46 touchdowns and 15 interceptions.

    Ware beat out running back Anthony Thompson of Indiana for the award.

No. 15 Davey O'Brien: TCU, 1938

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    Like Doak Walker, Davey O'Brien also has an award named after him and a Heisman Trophy to go along with it.

    During an undefeated season in 1938, the TCU quarterback led the team in passing, throwing a touchdown in every game. He also led the team in rushing and was the punter.

    He passed for 19 touchdowns, completing 99 of 166 passes for 1,457 yards while becoming the first player to win the Maxwell, Walter Camp and Heisman awards in the same season.

    O'Brien also rushed for 390 yards on 124 carries.

No. 14 Reggie Bush: USC, 2005

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    Even though his Heisman is now vacated, the USC running back still had a top-15 Heisman season.

    With nearly 92 percent of the votes, he received the most support of any candidate in Heisman history.  His signature moment came when he pushed quarterback Matt Leinert into the end zone to beat Notre Dame.

    Bush rushed for 294 yards on only 23 carries against Fresno State. He was a do-it all running back who averaged 7.8 yards a carry.

    For the season, Bush rushed for 1.740 yards and 16 touchdowns while also catching 37 passes for 478 yards and two more scores. He also had a punt return for a touchdown.

    He was the most explosive player in college football.

No. 13 Bo Jackson: Auburn, 1985

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    Bo Jackson had some mind-boggling statistics, but struggled in some of his biggest games. He rushed for 1,786 yards and 17 touchdowns, averaging 6.4 yards a carry.

    Jackson was a big bruising back who teams were afraid to bring down, but he missed games against Florida and Tennessee, both Auburn losses, because of injury.

    He defeated Chuck Long in what was considered to be the closest margin of victory in the history of the Heisman.

No. 12 Ty Detmer: BYU, 1990

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    Ty Detmer was a passing machine at BYU, winning the Heisman Trophy as a junior.

    He passed for 5,188 yards, with 41 touchdowns with 28 interceptions. The passing numbers were astounding for the time. Detmer beat wide receiver Rocket Ismail of Notre Dame for the award.

    Detmer passed for 406 yards and three touchdowns in a 28-21 victory over No. 1 Miami in what was his signature game of the season. The Miami Hurricanes were the defending national champions.

    At the time, Detmer held 42 NCAA records.

No. 11 Danny Wuerffel: Florida, 1996

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    Danny Wuerffel led a talented Florida team against the nation's toughest schedule and the Gators still managed to average nearly 47 points a game.

    He passed for 3,635 yards, with 39 touchdowns and only 13 interceptions. He also finished with a passer efficiency rating of 170.6.

    In the Sugar Bowl, Florida defeated No. 1 Florida State, 52-20, on its way to a national championship.

    Wuerffel beat out running back Troy Davis of Iowa State for the award.

No. 10 Herschel Walker: Georgia, 1982

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    Herschel Walker probably could have won the Heisman Trophy any of this three seasons at Georgia. But he won it his junior year, even though it did not stand out from any of the others.

    Walker rushed for 1,752 yards and 17 touchdowns, despite breaking his thumb in the season opener against Clemson and only rushing for 20 yards.

    While he averaged a little more than five yards a carry, Walker carried the ball 335 times. Once the cast came off, he averaged 183 yards over his final eight games.

    Walker edged out Stanford quarterback John Elway for the award.

No. 9 Tim Tebow: Florida, 2007

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    Tim Tebow might be the most talked-about of all the Heisman Trophy winners. He was the first sophomore to win the award.

    During the 2007 season, Tebow passed for 32 touchdowns and threw only six interceptions. He also ran for 23 scores, giving him a combined 55 touchdowns.

    He passed for 3,286 yards, ranking second in the nation in passing efficiency, and ran for 895 more. This was clearly one of the most complete seasons in the history of college football.

    Tebow beat out running back Darren McFadden of Arkansas for the award.

No. 8 Doug Flutie: Boston College, 1984

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    Doug Flutie was a quarterback who was great at buying time and did more with what he was given than maybe anybody in the history of football. 

    In 1984, he clinched the Heisman with his Hail Mary touchdown pass on the final play of a 47-45 victory over Miami.

    During the season, he passed for 3,454 yards and 27 touchdowns with 11 interceptions. 

    He did not have nearly the talent around him that some of the other Heisman winners did and that is what has moved him up higher on the list.

    Flutie easily beat Ohio State running back Keith Byars for the award.

No. 7 Cam Newton: Auburn, 2010

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    Cam Newton put up video-game numbers during his 2010 Heisman season at Auburn. The numbers were similar to what Tebow did two years earlier, only Newton led his team to a national title.

    The junior passed for 2,854 yards, with 28 touchdowns and only six interceptions. He also led the nation in passing efficiency.

    He was 15th in the country in rushing yards, finishing with 1,452 yards and 20 touchdowns. He also had a touchdown reception.

    Newton brought Auburn back from a 24-0 deficit at Alabama during the final game of the season.

    Andrew Luck from Stanford was a distant runner-up.

No. 6 Mike Rozier: Nebraska, 1983

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    Nebraska's Mike Rozier is the first of six running backs at the top of the list.

    He was the unstoppable force on a Nebraska offense that could not be slowed down.

    Rozier rushed for 2,148 yards and 29 touchdowns while averaging an amazing 7.8 yards a carry.

    He set the NCAA record for rushing yards in a season and rushed for more than 100 yards in all 11 regular-season games.

    Rozier was the catalyst behind a Cornhuskers offense that averaged 52 points and more than 400 yards rushing a game.

    No player with more than 214 carries in a season has ever had an average of more yards per carry than Rozier. The mark has stood now for nearly 30 years.

No. 5 Tony Dorsett: Pittsburgh, 1976

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    Tony Dorsett helped to lead the Pittsburgh Panthers to the national championship and also had quite a season in the process.

    Dorset rushed for 1,948 yards with 21 touchdowns. He also caught a touchdown pass.

    Even though he averaged 6.8 yards a carry the season before, he finished fourth in the Heisman. In 1976, he averaged 5.8 yards a carry.

    What sets Dorsett apart and puts him in the top five is that he averaged 215 rushing yards a game over the final seven games of the season.

    He rushed for 202 in the Sugar Bowl victory over Georgia and 224 against in-state rival Penn State a few weeks before.

No. 4 O.J. Simpson: USC, 1968

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    O.J. Simpson could have won the award in 1967, but instead took it home in 1968.

    He rushed for 1,880 yards and 23 touchdowns. Those were astronomical numbers for the 1960s. Simpson also caught 26 passes for 211 yards.

    Simpson defeated running back Leroy Keyes of Purdue for the Heisman in what is still the most lopsided vote of all time.

    Simpson is one of five USC running backs to win the award and was the second to do so.

No. 3 Ricky Williams: Texas, 1998

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    Ricky Williams was the all-time leading rusher in college football history when he left Texas and his senior season was one of the best ever.

    Williams rushed for 2,124 yards and 27 touchdowns while averaging 5.9 yards a carry. He carried the ball an incredible 361 times.

    Williams also caught 24 passes for 262 yards and a touchdown.

    He came up big on the biggest stage consistently and beat Kansas State quarterback Michael Bishop for the award.

No. 2 Marcus Allen: USC, 1981

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    In 1981, Marcus Allen put up numbers a running back had never seen and have only seen once since.

    Allen became the first 2,000-yard rusher in college football history, amassing 2,427 yards and 22 touchdowns, while carrying the ball more 400 times and averaging 5.8 yards a carry.

    He set 14 NCAA records and tied two others. He also led USC in receptions with 34 for 256 yards and a touchdown.

    Allen rushed for more than 200 yards in an NCAA-record five straight games and needed every yard to beat out Herschel Walker for the award.

No. 1 Barry Sanders: Oklahoma State, 1988

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    This choice is a no-brainer as Barry Sanders put together the best season the college football world has ever seen.

    The junior had served as a backup to Thurman Thomas during his first two seasons in Stillwater, but had been an All-American punt returner.

    During his Heisman season, he rushed for 2,850 yards and 44 touchdowns, numbers that will likely stand for a long time. His touchdown record also remains. The junior averaged 7.6 yards a carry.

    In team rushing, Sanders would have finished 14th in the country. That's quite an amazing stat and one of the most dominant seasons in sports history.