BY SPNW Staff 12:00PM 12/25/2011

Washington vs. Heisman Trophy winners

Washington has played against a Heisman Trophy winner 13 times and has two wins win to show for it, in 1962 and 1981. UW faces 2011 recipient Robert Griffin III in the Alamo Bowl.

The Heisman Trophy, first awarded in 1935, went to Baylor's Robert Griffin in 2011. Griffin and the Bears face Washington Thursday in in the Alamo Bowl. / Wiki Commons

Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III won the 2011 Heisman Trophy (first winner from his school) by more than 200 points over Stanford’s Andrew Luck. The Huskies will face off against Griffin, who threw 36 touchdown passes and led the NCAA in passing efficiency, in the Alamo Bowl. The Huskies have beaten a team featuring a Heisman Trophy winner (or a player en route that season to winning the Heisman) twice.

UW vs. Heisman Trophy Winners

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1941 9/27 UW Bruce Smith RB Minnesota Minn 14-6

Smith played offense and defense, rushed for 109 yards, completed two passes and scored both Minnesota’s touchdowns.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1949 10/1 UW Leon Hart E Notre Dame ND 27-7

Hart caught two touchdown passes in Notre Dame’s first visit to Husky Stadium. In Hart’s four years, Notre Dame was never defeated and tied just twice.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1960 10/1 UW Joe Bellino RB Navy Navy 15-14

Ran for 63 yards and a TD as Navy handed UW its only loss in a 10-1 season. UW coach Jim Owens: “He makes you look like you don’t practice tackling.”

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1962 10/13 Port. Terry Baker QB OSU UW 14-13

Threw for 144 yards and two TDs and ran 14 times, netting 108 yards. A year earlier, Baker had 302 yards of total offense and scored twice in a 30-29 defeat.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1965 10/9 UW Mike Garrett RB USC USC 34-0

Carried 31 times for 175 yards (long gain of 58) in USC’s easy victory. “He’s one of the finest runners I’ve ever seen,” said UW coach Jim Owens.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1967 11/11 UW Gary Beban QB UCLA UCLA 48-0

Completed 14 of 24 passes for 289 yards and three TDs; also ran 24 yards for a TD in UCLA’s 48-0 win, the biggest loss of the Owens era.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1968 10/19 L.A. O.J. Simpson RB USC USC 14-7

Simpson rushed for 172 yards but didn’t score. A year earlier, as a junior, he totaled 235 yards and two TDs, one on an 86-yard run at Husky Stadium

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1970 11/7 Stanford Jim Plunkett QB Stanford Stan 29-22

In a showdown against Sonny Sixkiller, Plunkett threw for for 268 yards and four TDs in a 29-22 win at Palo Alto. Sixkiller ran for a TD and passed for one.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1979 11/10 UW Charles White RB USC USC 24-17

White ran for 243 yards but didn’t score. Another future Heisman winner, Marcus Allen, scored the winning TD on a 10-yard run in the fourth quarter.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1981 11/14 UW Marcus Allen RB USC UW 13-3

Allen rushed for 216 yards and a TD in 1980, added 155 yards in his Heisman year, becoming the first player to reach 2,000 rushing yards in a season.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
1995 9/16 OSU Eddie George RB Ohio St. OSU 30-20

Ran for 212 yards and two TDs as the No. 10 Buckeyes rolled to an easy win in Columbus. George had 149 yards and a TD as OSU built a 23-7 halftime lead.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
2002 10/19 L.A. Carson Palmer QB USC USC 41-21

Palmer completed 21 of 34 passes for 348 yards and four TDs, three to Mike Williams, as the 19th-ranked Trojans rolled over the Huskies.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
2004 10/23 L.A. Matt Leinart QB USC USC 38-0

Leinart, a junior, threw for 217 yards and a pair of touchdowns, including a 15-yard strike to future Heisman winner Reggie Bush, for the No. 1-ranked Trojans.

Year Date Venue Heisman Winner Pos. School Result
2005 10/22 UW Reggie Bush RB USC USC 51-24

Bush rushed eight times for 51 yards and a TD and caught two passes for 18 yards, and showed his Heisman stuff by returning a punt 84 yards for a TD.


  • Tom

    “I’d keep Jackson as the starter and use the cash and draft resources
    elsewhere. Otherwise, you’re trusting Carroll and Schneider to know an
    QB upgrade when they see one,  a case they’ve yet to make.”

    So they shouldn’t go after a QB of the future because… they have yet to find the QB of the future?  Come on Art, that’s just silly.  Based on the light resources they sunk into Jackson and Whitehurst, it’s pretty clear that Carroll and Schneider themselves never thought those guys were long term answers.  They weren’t going to reach for a QB in the draft the last couple of years, and they’re just biding their time until they find the guy they really like.

    • Art Thiel

      Tom, you make my point. As I wrote zippy, they can’t get Luck and Griffin, and the rest in 2012 aren’t necessarily long-term answers. You’re right — they shouldn’t reach for a long-term QB. But the placeholder, Jackson, can be good for one more year.

    • Guest

      I wouldn’t call dropping 20 spots in the 2nd round and adding a 3rd rounder along with the 8 mil contract “light.”

  • zippy

    Time for Carroll and Schneider to earn their money– pick that QB – they did a good job on the rest of the team- but come on Art, this is a QB league– Carrol’s future depends on his skill, or more likely luck (small case), finding a true upper rung NFL QB — something the seahawks have never had.

    • Art Thiel

      They aren’t going to get — or trade up for — Luck or Griffin, so that leaves a draftee field that may have as much talent in the third round as lower first, especially if Landry Jones stays in school. Flynn would be a better choice, but they have to trade to get him with at least four other teams in competition. The Seahawks can make the playoffs with Jackson, even though he’s not a long-term answer. 

  • Art Thiel

    Jackson needs more time, time he didn’t get in the lockout summer. He’ll never be great, but Pete’s all about winning with special teams and D.