Name: Jay Berwanger
College: Chicago Maroons
Winning Year: 1935 – 1st Award
Official Heisman Profile: Click Here
Interesting Notes: Berwanger was the first winner of the Heisman Award and is the only player to not actually receive a “Heisman”. The award was originally named the “Downtown Athletic Club’s Trophy to the Outstanding College Football Player East of the Mississippi River” and was renamed the following year after the death of then-DAC president John Heisman. Berwanger was also the first player to be selected in the inaugural NFL college player draft in 1936 by the Philadelphia Eagles. Despite a stellar college career and being a #1 draft choice, Berwanger never played professional football. Berwanger was elected to the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame in 1954.
Featured Card: 1955 Topps All American #78. Despite never playing a down of professional football, Berwanger was included in the college themed All American set and it is considered to be his only rookie card. His lack of a professional career has hurt his card prices as most copies of this card, which comes from a legendary set, are listed in the $10-$30 range on eBay, depending on condition and whether or not it is officially graded.
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