When the Heisman Trophy winners gather on Saturday night to welcome a new exceptional college football player into their exclusive fraternity, there will be a void left by the death on Monday night of 1994 winner Rashaan Salaam. The former University of Colorado standout was only 42.
Salaam was found dead Monday night at a park in Boulder, Colorado, according to a USA Today report citing Boulder police spokeswoman said. Additionally, the USA today report says Salaam’s mom told the paper that the police suspect the death was a suicide after finding a note.
In his Junior season in 1994, Salaam had one of the best seasons by a running back in college football history, become only the fourth rusher to eclipse 2,000 rushing yards. He accumulated a total of 2,055 yards and 24 touchdowns, leading the Buffaloes to a 11-1 record. That season he became the first ever practicing Muslim to win the Heisman Trophy.
After winning the Heisman Trophy, Salaam decided to forgo his senior season in college to enter the 1995 NFL draft. He was chosen with the 21st pick in the first round by the Chicago Bears. After rushing for 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns in his rookie season, issues with injuries, fumbles, and marijuana use derailed his Bears career. After 3 seasons with Chicago, he was released in 1997. He then played the 1999 season for the Cleveland Browns.
Check out this amazing highlight of Salaam reaching the 2,000 rushing yard milestone in 1994. RIP.