The Heisman Trophy is awarded yearly to the best player in college football. The Heisman Trophy mission statement reads exactly like this:
“The Heisman Memorial Trophy annually recognizes the outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity.”
It goes on to mention something about ability, perseverance, diligence, and hard work. Those words only have meaning if the individuals awarded the trophy actually epitomize those traits through their actions. Words by themselves are meaningless. Should Jameis Winston win the Heisman Trophy the inscription on the trophy is effectively meaningless, but instead of taking them off the trophy, let’s make some additions. The words valor, courage, honor, awesome and cray (all the kids are saying it) would fit perfectly next to other words we don’t really care about either. We can actually test out the new and revised Heisman Trophy
This year’s Heisman Trophy goes to: “The outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity, valor, courage, and honor. Winners epitomize great ability combined with diligence, perseverance, hard work, and awesomeness. Finally, he is just straight CRAY.”
Sound better? (You think I’m over reacting? Maybe? And all of this over a single word?......INTEGRITY!!!!)
The definition of the integrity according to Merriam Webster dictionary defines it as: firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values.
When used in a sentence it goes a little like this:
He's a man of the highest integrity.
Now ask yourself, can you substitute HE with Jameis Winston? If you can’t, then he doesn’t’ deserve the trophy.
The actual events of the night in question may never be known. According to a NY Daily News column the victim says she was ‘blacked out’ and “hit in the head’ on the alleged night of the assault. Two friends and witnesses of Jameis Winston said the victim was coherent, the sex was consensual, and she even told them to get out the room after they barged in. Leon County State Attorney Willie Meggs had admitted shortcomings (big surprise) with the case but also “there was evidence of a sexual assault.” She would late clarify her statement.
Add up all the known facts, the 9-1-1 call, the police reports, the witnesses’ accounts, and all the physical evidence and the conclusion is no charges will be or were ever filed.
What does that mean?
It means that we will never know what happened on the alleged night of the assault. A handful of people will know what occurred but the rest of us will read it as a he said she said allegation. Did the Tallahassee police make this case even more difficult with what appears to be an inability to take this case seriously? It appears so but in the end it means that Jameis Winston is not going to be charged with sexual assault. It does not mean that he is NOT a rapist. It also doesn’t mean that he IS a rapist. It does, however, mean that Winston should not be eligible to win the Heisman Trophy.
The Heisman trophy is the highest award a college football player can earn and although there is no proof Winston sexually assaulted the alleged victim the prestige of the award cannot be given to a player involved in those kinds of accusations. Reggie Bush had his trophy rescinded for accepting ‘improper benefits’ also known as MONEY. If a victimless crime of taking money gets a Heisman trophy taken away than an alleged sexual assault needs to preclude an individual from winning one.
Jameis Winston will still have the opportunity to win a crystal football, play in the NFL, and make millions of dollars. He shouldn’t win a Heisman Trophy because of whether he did or he didn’t, it means integrity was not on display that evening and those events will last forever.