About the Heisman and Cam Newton


First awarded: In 1935 to Chicago running back Jay Berwanger, who also was the first player drafted by the NFL. He never played professional football, becoming instead a sportswriter and car part manufacturer.

Name: Originally it was called the Downtown Athletic Club Trophy. It was renamed the Heisman following the death of legendary coach John Heisman in 1936. Heisman, known for his offensive innovation, coached at eight schools, most notably at Georgia Tech (1904-1919), where he won a national championship and went unbeaten four times.

Heisman's view of the award: Serving as the Downtown Athletic Club's director of athletics before his death, Heisman objected to the idea of anointing one player as the best in the country. Wrote his biographer, Wiley Lee Umphlett, explaining Heisman's view: "How could one player be singled out as better than his peers? How could an offensive specialist be looked upon as more valuable than a defensive man? How could a halfback be more essential than a lineman who made it possible for the back to gain yardage?"

Dimensions of the trophy: 14 inches long, 13 1/2 inches high, 6 1/2 inches wide. Weighs 25 pounds.

Distribution: One trophy is given to the winner and one to the winner's university.

Schools with most Heisman winners: Notre Dame and Ohio State each have seven. Next best is Southern Cal with six.

Only two-time winner: Archie Griffin, Ohio State (1974-75).

Previous Auburn Heisman winners: Quarterback Pat Sullivan (1971) and running back Bo Jackson (1985).


  • Led Auburn (13-0) to SEC championship and its first BCS championship game. The Tigers play Oregon Jan. 10, seeking Auburn's first national championship since 1957.
  • Has thrown for 28 touchdowns, ran for 20 more. Became only the second player in FBS (formerly Division 1-A) to have at least 20 TDs passing and rushing in a single season. The other was Florida's Tim Tebow in 2007 (32 and 23).
  • Leads the nation in passing efficiency rating (188.2), which, if it holds up one more game, would eclipse the FBS single-season record of Hawaii's Colt Brennan (186.0, 2006).
  • Has rushed for 1,409 yards, second most by a quarterback this season (to Michigan's Denard Robinson, 1,543). Ranks 15th overall in yards rushing per game, 10th in total yards. Only the second SEC quarterback to rush for more than 1,000 yards (Auburn's Jimmy Sidle, 1,006 in 1963).
  • Needs just two more yards to get to 4,000 total yards this season, becoming only the third SEC player to reach that number. The others were Tebow (4,181 in 13 games, 2007) and Kentucky's Tim Couch (4,151 in 11 games, 1998).
  • The difference maker as Auburn won four games by three points of less this season. Rallied the Tigers from a 24-point halftime deficit vs. Alabama with three second-half touchdown passes. Engineered a 21-point third quarter to come back against Clemson. Took the Tigers on a 19-play, 86-yard drive for winning field goal as time expired vs. Kentucky.