The Heisman Trust’s mission statement states it “recognizes the outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity.”
Herschel Walker, the 1982 Heisman Trophy winner from the University of Georgia, believes integrity is a big part of the process. His belief prevented him from voting for Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston last year, and he doesn’t plan on voting for him this year either.
Walker discussed his decision Thursday on The Paul Finebaum Show:
“Before he won the award, there was an accusation of sexual assault. Well, forgive me for saying this, but I didn’t vote for him. I didn’t vote for him because — it had nothing to do with him on the field — when I won the Heisman, I’d hope it stood for more than just me playing football. I hope it stood for me as a person, how I did in school, and me being an athlete. Being an athlete is more than just playing the game. Being an athlete is doing a lot more. I didn’t vote for Jameis because of that. And I may have been wrong for that. But in my opinion, the Heisman Trophy is supposed to mean integrity. At that time, there was not integrity, because of the situation that happened at that time. Today, until his act is cleaned up, I can’t give him my vote. I’ll say it right now, I can’t give him my vote.”
Walker’s decision will also rule out fellow Georgia running back Todd Gurley, while he is being investigated for a violation of NCAA rules.
“Same situation with Todd Gurley,” Walker continued. “Right at this moment today, I can’t give him my vote. If he comes back and I see a change, then my vote can be there. But at this given time today, I can’t give him my vote.”
That leaves Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott as the front runner for Walker’s vote (and pretty much everyone else).