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Tradition of elite linebackers alive in 55

Donning the double-five on a USC jersey a sign of excellence, a source of Trojans pride

Updated: October 26, 2011, 10:37 PM ET
By Andy Kamenetzky | ESPN.com

A linebacker's odds of winning the Heisman aren't considerably higher than the average college football fan's.

There's been only one defensive player in Heisman's history to take the award, and Michigan's Charles Woodson had to double as an elite punt returner and occasional wide receiver to break new ground.

The award goes to the nation's best player, and "best" is typically quantified by numbers. The sexier stats are reserved for quarterbacks and running backs. That's just how the ...

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