Players who had their stats and records erased from NCAA history because of NCAA violations won't be getting those records reinstated anytime soon. And that means Reggie Bush won't get his Heisman Trophy back.
The NCAA said Tuesday that it would not be making any changes to its stats in the wake of rules changes allowing players to receive endorsement and sponsor money for their image rights. The NCAA's statement comes after the Heisman Trust said that Bush would only get his Heisman back if the NCAA made the decision to reinstate Bush and his statistics.
“Although college athletes can now receive benefits from their names, images and likenesses through activities like endorsements and appearances, NCAA rules still do not permit pay-for-play type arrangements," the NCAA said. "The NCAA infractions process exists to promote fairness in college sports. The rules that govern fair play are voted on, agreed to and expected to be upheld by all NCAA member schools. Previous penalties, including those that are several years old, will not be re-evaluated or reconsidered based on the recent changes to NIL rules.”
Bush had asked for his Heisman back and his records reinstated once the NCAA said that players could make money off their name, image and likeness. Bush's Heisman was vacated along with his stats at USC after an investigation found Bush's family received benefits from an agent while he was playing at USC. The school was forced to vacate wins from Bush's time with the Trojans, received a postseason ban and had scholarships reduced.
Not long after Bush had made his request public, the Heisman Trust said that it would recognize Bush as the winner of the 2005 award if the NCAA acted.
"Bush’s 2005 season records remain vacated by the NCAA and, as a result, under the rule set forth by the Heisman Trust and stated on the Heisman Ballot, he is not eligible to be awarded the 2005 Heisman Memorial Trophy," the Heisman Trust said in a July 2 statement. "Should the NCAA reinstate Bush’s 2005 status, the Heisman Trust looks forward to welcoming him back to the Heisman family."
Bush rushed for 1,740 yards on just 200 attempts and had 37 catches for 478 yards with 18 total touchdowns in 2005. He beat out Texas QB Vince Young — who led the Longhorns to an epic BCS title over USC a few weeks later — and 2004 Heisman winner and teammate Matt Leinart for the award.
Bush isn't the only prominent player affected by the NCAA's refusal to reevaluate its prior eligibility rulings. Former Ohio State QB Terrelle Pryor and other ex-Buckeyes asked for the NCAA to reinstate their 2010 records after they were deemed ineligible by the NCAA. The Ohio State scandal of tattoos in exchange for Ohio State gear led to the departure of coach Jim Tressel and, ultimately, the hire of Urban Meyer.
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