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1944 - 10th Award
Les Horvath
Ohio State Back

Les hit his peak in his senior year, gaining 924 yards on 163 carries for 5.7 yards per carry. He scored 12 touchdowns in 1944, and completed 14 of 32 passes for 344 yards. 6 of the 14 pass completions were for touchdowns. He set a new Big Ten Rushing Record and played in all of his team's nine games. One of the more versatile backs seen on any football team, he kicked, passed, blocked, tackled and carried OSU through a perfect season, all of which won him the title of the "Playing Coach." Horvath was no slouch in the classroom either, graduating in June 1945 with a degree in dentistry. Les entered the Navy in June 1945 as a double threat: dental officer in the morning and assistant football coach (to Paul Brown) in the afternoon. He continued coaching when transferred to Hawaii and won the service championship. After a three-year fling with the pros (Rams and Browns) Dr. Horvath established his practice in Los Angeles. His hobby was golf and he coached (very successfully) Bantam Football 1970-72, winning the League Title for Glendale. Les passed away in November of 1995.

Les was elected to the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame in 1969.

The Voting

Place

Name

School

Class

Position

Points

1Les HorvathOhio StateSeniorQB412
2Glenn DavisArmySophomoreHB287
3Felix "Doc" BlanchardArmySophomoreFB237
4Don WhitmireNavyJuniorT115
5Buddy YoungIllinoisFreshmanHB105
6Bob KellyNotre DameSeniorHB76
7Bob JenkinsNavyJuniorHB60
8Doug KennaArmySeniorQB56
9Bob FenimoreOklahoma A&MJuniorB54
10Thomas McWilliamsMississippi StateFreshmanTB37

This was an extremely close vote and Horvath won the Heisman despite finishing first in only one section. Army's two standout sophomores, Glenn Davis and Doc Blanchard, who would later go on to win Heismans of their own, just about divided their points as Davis, who was from California and played at West Point, won in the West and the East and Blanchard, who was from Texas, won in the Southwest. Horvath had a huge amount of second and third place votes that pushed him above Davis and Blanchard.

No. of registered electors: 750
Date of announcement: December 1, 1944
Date of dinner: December 5, 1944

The positions within each region:

Place

East

South

Midwest

Southwest

Far West

1DavisBlanchardHorvathFenimoreDavis
2HorvathHorvathDavisBlanchardHorvath
3BlanchardWhitmireBlanchardHorvathYoung
4WhitmireDavisYoungDavisBlanchard
5KellyMcWilliamsKellyKellyKelly

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