- Pat Yasinskas, ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter
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You know what I’m doing right now? I’m shrugging my shoulders because this really doesn’t impact the Saints or the NFL. Does it impact Bush? I’m sure it does to some degree and you can hear it in the words of the statement he released through the Saints.
“I will forever appreciate the honor bestowed upon me as a winner of the Heisman,’’ Bush said. “While this decision is heart-breaking, I find solace in knowing that the award was made possible by the support and love of so many. Those are gifts that can never be taken away.’’
Yep, give the Heisman Trust folks their trophy back and try to move forward. That’s the best thing Bush can do right now. I’m not condoning his actions that got the University of Southern California in trouble and led to this latest move. But they were ancient history.
Bush is right when he talks about gifts that can never be taken away. Think about your college or high school diploma or some other old award that’s stored in a box somewhere in your garage. If it were gone tomorrow, would it really be gone from your mind?
Somewhere in my garage I’ve got a plaque with the photo and a list of achievements of a high school baseball team that went very deep into the state playoffs back in the 1980s. I haven’t seen the plaque in years and, if it disappeared tomorrow, would I really miss it? No. When I was in Pennsylvania this summer, I walked into a restaurant and saw two of my teammates. Instantly, three quarters of the starting infield from that team was back together. We looked up and saw a picture of our late coach on the wall. We talked about that season, the fun we had and the fact we were incredibly lucky to be carried so far by an incredible pitcher. Those were gifts that can’t be taken away.
It’s the same thing for Bush. He’ll always know that he was the best college football player in the world in 2005. He’ll have the memories and he’ll have the relationships. So what if he doesn’t have the trophy?
So Reggie Bush is forfeiting his Heisman Trophy? I guess that’s a big story for our college football folks, but we’ve got to address it here because Bush is now a member of the New Orleans Saints.