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1935 - 1st Award
Jay Berwanger
Chicago Back

In 23 games for the Maroons, Chicago's "one-man gang" gained more than a mile from scrimmage - a net yardage of 1,839, or an average of 4.19 for 439 attempts. He completed 50 of 146 passes for 921 yards, scored 22 touchdowns and booted 20 extra points for a total of 152 points. He averaged 46.3 yards on 34 kickoffs and 38 yards on 233 punts. Enlisting in the Navy Air Force in 1942, he spent most of the war teaching instrument flying. In September 1945, Jay started his own manufacturing business in Chicago. Jay split his time between Oak Brook, IL and Manzanillo, Mexico. Jay passed away June 26th, 2002.

Jay was elected to the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame in 1954.

The Voting







1Jay BerwangerChicagoSeniorRB84
2Monk MeyerArmyJuniorHB29
3William ShakespeareNotre DameSenior HB23
4Pepper ConstablePrincetonSeniorFB20

A total of 65 voters cast ballots for this Heisman Trophy. Actually, at the time it was not "the" Heisman. The Award was the Downtown Athletic Club's Trophy to the Outstanding College Football Player East of the Mississippi River. In October of 1936, John Heisman, then the DAC's Director of Athletics, passed away and the Award was named in his honor. The geographical breakdown of the vote showed Berwanger a unanimous winner in all sections.

No. of registered electors: 65
Date of announcement: November 29, 1935
Date of award dinner: December 9th, 1935

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