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1987 - 53rd Award
Tim Brown
Notre Dame Receiver

The single attribute that sets the great football player apart from the merely good one is the ability to turn a game around on one play. More than any other college star of the 1987 season, Tim Brown of the University of Notre Dame possesses this rare talent, and it is for this reason that he was the 53rd winner of college football's most coveted individual award, The Heisman Trophy. Brown, who does everything on a football field except sell tickets, is the seventh Trophy recipient from Notre Dame, which is tied with USC for the most Heisman winners. He catches passes, runs back punts and kickoffs, rushes when necessary, and drives any defense to distraction just by being on the field. At 6 feet and 195 pounds, Brown is not huge by football standards. But he possesses great speed, elusiveness in the open field, sure hands and a fine grasp of the strategy and tactics of what is in reality a complex game. "He is," says Lou Holtz, "the most intelligent player I've ever been around." As a measure of Brown's versatility, consider these statistics through the first nine games of the season: 32 pass receptions for 729 yards and 3 touchdowns; 29 rushes for 133 yards and a touchdown; and three touchdowns. Tim was drafted by the Oakland Raiders as their number one pick in the 1988 NFL Draft. Tim played for the Oakland Raiders for fifteen years, before retiring in 2004 from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Voting

 

Points

 

Place

Name

School

Class

Pos.

1

2

3

Total

1stTim BrownNotre DameSr.WR3241731241,442
2ndDon McPhersonSyracuseSr.QB167135 60831
3rdGordon LockbaumHoly CrossSr.TB-DB108103127657
4thLorenzo WhiteMichigan StateSr.TB89 121123632
5thCraig HeywardPittsburghSr.RB1744 31170
6thChris SpielmanOhio StateSr.LB1520 25110
7th Thurman ThomasOklahoma StateSr.TB1123 2099
8thGaston GreenUCLASr.TB4133573
9thEmmitt SmithFloridaFr.RB2114270
10thBobby HumphreyAlabamaJr.RB5171463

Tim Brown became Notre Dame's seventh Heisman winner, the most of any college at the time, and in the process became the first receiver to win the Trophy since another Notre Dame star, Leon Hart, in 1949. Brown became only the third receiver to win the Heisman, joining Hart and Yale's Larry Kelley, who won in 1936. Brown was a graduate of Woodrow Wilson High School in Dallas, the alma mater of 1938 winner Davey O'Brien, marking the first time one high school produced two Heisman winners.

No. of registered electors: 1,050
Date of announcement: December 5, 1987
Date of dinner: December 10, 1987

The positions within each region are as follows:

Place

NORTH-EAST

MID-ATLANTIC

SOUTH

SOUTH-WEST

MIDWEST

FAR WEST

1stMcPhersonBrownBrownBrownBrownBrown
2ndBrownMcPhersonWhiteWhiteLockbaumWhite
3rdLockbaumLockbaumLockbaumLockbaumMcPhersonLockbaum
4thWhiteWhiteMcPhersonSpielmanWhiteMcPherson
5thHeywardHeywardHumphreyMcPhersonThomasGreen

Runners-up
Don McPherson - Syracuse
Gordon Lockbaum - Holy Cross
Lorenzo White - Michigan State
Craig Heyward - Pittsburgh

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