Winner of the 1991 Heisman Trophy, Howard’s acrobatic catches made him one of the most electrifying players ever to play the college game. He became the first receiver in Big Ten history to lead the conference in scoring (138 points) as he set or tied 5 NCAA records and 12 single-season Michigan records. Add the 12 scores as a sophomore and two as a freshman, and Howard amassed an amazing 37 touchdowns in his UM career. The All-American won the Heisman by the second largest margin of victory in the trophy’s history. He was also awarded the Walter Camp Trophy and the Maxwell Award that year before graduating from the University of Michigan with a Bachelors degree in Mass Communications.
The 5-foot 10-inch, 170-pound junior sensation from Cleveland was the second Heisman recipient from the University of Michigan. It was in the Notre Dame game that Howard showed a spellbound national television audience just why he is the heart and soul of the 1991 Maize and Blue. With Michigan desperate to end a string of four consecutive defeats at Notre Dame’s hands, an early Wolverine surge had run out of steam and the Irish were poised to take the lead. Then, quickly, Michigan moved into Notre Dame territory. On the crucial fourth-down-and-inches play that decided the outcome, Howard’s old high school classmate, Wolverine quarterback Elvis Grbac, launched a high, floating spiral that seemed too distant to be caught. But the mercurial Howard raced under it, leaped as far as he could, and cradled the ball in his outstretched hands for the touchdown that gave Michigan one of its most cherished victories. The play is already enshrined in Ann Arbor lore as “the catch.” In game after game, Howard has made dazzling receptions, run kickoffs back with reckless abandon and a wondrous facility for using his blockers to full open-field advantage, and carried the ball brilliantly on wide-sweeping reverses. Howard’s 1991 season was amazing by any standards catching 61 passes for 950 yards and 19 touchdowns (23 total TDs.) Points Place Name School Class Position Points 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th Howard won all six sections in recording the third highest margin of victory in Heisman Trophy history. Howard became the fourth consecutive junior and the second Michigan player to win the Heisman, 51 years after Hall of Famer Tom Harmon won his. Ty Detmer, the Brigham Young quarterback who was the Heisman winner in 1990, managed only a third place finish. No. of registered electors: 917 Date of announcement: December 14, 1991 .
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