In light of the NCAA’s ruling to allow student-athletes to profit from their name, image and likeness effective Thursday, Reggie Bush would like his Heisman Trophy back.
Bush, the former USC star running back who went on to a lengthy NFL career, won the 2005 Heisman but was stripped of it and his college records when the NCAA determined he received impermissible benefits while in college.
Reggie Bush asks to have his Heisman returned
“Over the last few months, on multiple occasions, my team and I have reached out to both the NCAA and The Heisman Trust in regard to the reinstatement of my college records and the return of my Heisman,” Bush said in a statement shared on Twitter Thursday. “We left multiple messages for Michael Comerford, the President of the Heisman Trust, but instead received a call from Rob Whalen, the Executive Director, who stated that Mr. Comerford would not be calling us back and that, in any event, they could not help us.”
Bush rushed for 3,169 yards and had 1,301 receiving yards with 43 total touchdowns during his three seasons at USC. He helped the Trojans win a national title in 2004, but the NCAA forced the university to vacate all its wins when Bush was ineligible, including the 2005 Orange Bowl that gave the Trojans the national championship. In addition, the NCAA forced USC to disassociate itself from Bush, a disassociation that USC lifted last year.
“We reached out to the NCAA on multiple occasions and received no help or got no response at all,” Bush, who now works as a college football analyst for Fox, continued in his statement. “It is my strong belief that I won the Heisman Trophy ‘solely’ due to my hard work and dedication on the football field and it is also my firm belief that my records should be reinstated.”
I never cheated this game. That was what they wanted you to believe about me.— Reggie Bush (@ReggieBush) July 1, 2021
Bush has his supporters
Bush, who last month was announced as a nominee for the College Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2022, isn’t the only one calling for the NCAA to allow the one-time Trojan to earn back what he feels is rightfully his. Other athletes and sports personalities came to his defense as well.
Hey NCAA: since you have now admitted that college athletes are professional, how about righting past wrongs and reinstating the records of Reggie Bush, the Fab Five, and countless others you mistreated over the phony concept of amateurism? It was unfair then, and clearly so now.— Jay Bilas (@JayBilas) July 1, 2021
Happy NIL Day.— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) July 1, 2021
All I can think about is how much money Reggie Bush could have made on NIL.
Estimates suggest Reggie Bush would make between $4 million to $6 million annually with the new NIL rules.— Joe Pompliano (@JoePompliano) July 1, 2021
Yet the NCAA took away his Heisman Trophy because he accepted $300k under the table while USC made millions of dollars off his success.
It's time to return him the trophy. pic.twitter.com/p71C0dJOKO