Reggie Bush

Reginald Alfred "Reggie" Bush II (born March 2, 1985 in San Diego, California), nicknamed "The Prezident," alluding to George W. Bush, is an American football player who plays for the New Orleans Saints and formerly for the University of Southern California (USC). He played running back/tailback, wide receiver, and punt and kickoff returner for the team. He is generally recognized as one of the best running backs in college football history due to his speed, agility, evasiveness, and outstanding instincts on the gridiron.

On December 8, 2005, Bush was awarded the Walter Camp Award and the Doak Walker Award. On December 10, Bush won the most prestigious individual award in college football, the Heisman Trophy, beating out finalists Vince Young and former Heisman winner and teammate Matt Leinart. He rang up the highest-ever percentages of first-place votes (84.9 percent) and possible points (91.7 percent) in the balloting by members of the media and former Heisman winners. Additionally, he was named the 2005 AP Sportsman of the Year.

On January 12, 2006, Bush elected to forgo his senior season at USC and declared himself eligible for the NFL draft. Since it was predicted that he would be the first overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, held by the Houston Texans, Houston was expected to obtain Bush. However, in a surprising move on the night before the draft, the Texans signed Mario Williams, a defensive end from North Carolina State. The New Orleans Saints selected Bush with their #2 pick in the draft.

After being drafted by the Saints, many fans have called him "Saint Reggie", The Messiah and Mardi Gras, à la "King James", a name given to LeBron James because many expected him to be a savior for his team and city. Bush is now under the same hype.

On April 23, 2006, a report surfaced raising questions about whether Bush's family received gifts in violation of NCAA policies. The school has requested that the conference investigate the matter.

Bush grew up in Spring Valley, California. His father was a campus security officer and his mother was a deputy sheriff at the county jail. He attended Helix High School, where he excelled at football and track. In football, he and former University of Utah and current San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith, the top pick in the 2005 NFL Draft, led the team to two sectional championships. In track, he won many honors and ran a 10.42 100m in the California state championships.

Bush studied political science at USC. Bush often etches the number "619" on top of his black under eye markings as a tribute to the area code of South San Diego county.

In his freshman season, Bush immediately made a big impact for the Trojans, rushing for 521 yards, catching 15 passes for 314 yards, gaining another 492 yards returning kickoffs, and scored 8 touchdowns (3 rushing, 4 receiving, 1 kickoff return). His 1,331 total yards are the most ever by a freshman in USC history.

As a sophomore in 2004, Bush amassed 2,330 all-purpose yards, the most ever gained by a Trojan player since Marcus Allen gained a school record 2,683 yards in his Heisman trophy winning season of 1981, and scored 15 touchdowns (6 rushing, 7 receiving, 2 kickoff returns). He has lost only three fumbles in his college career, the first time against UCLA in 2004, the second in the Fresno State game in 2005, and the third against Texas in the 2006 Rose Bowl. The fumble against Texas was thought by most experts to be an attempted lateral, and some believe it went forward.

In the 2005 game against Fresno State where he commited one of his 3 fumbles, Bush set an PAC-10 record with 513 all-purpose yards, including 294 yards rushing.

By the end of the 2005 season, Bush had amassed 2,611 all-purpose yards and scored 18 touchdowns (15 rushing, 2 receiving, 1 punt return). He was awarded the Heisman Trophy Award on December 10, 2005. He had 784 first-place votes while Texas quarterback Vince Young finished second with 79 first-place votes, with an overall edge in voting points of 2541 to Young's 1608. The 933 point margin-of-victory was the 17th highest of all time. Matt Leinart came in third with 18 first-place votes. Bush had the second most first-place votes in the history of Heisman voting, second only to O.J. Simpson's 855 in 1968. He became the 71st winner of the Heisman Trophy, and the 7th USC player to receive the award. However, Bush could lose the Heisman Trophy due to an investigation into possible connections with an agent, which would result in him being retroactively ruled ineligible. In addition to his Heisman Tropy, Bush also won the Doak Walker Award, Walter Camp Award, and was selected as the PAC-10's offensive player of the year.

He and teammate Matt Leinart became the first and only two Heisman Trophy winners to play together in a single game (as Heisman trophy winners), the Rose Bowl on January 4, 2006 against the University of Texas Longhorns, which USC lost 41-38. Bush had a decent performance, amassing a total of 279 all-purpose yards (82 rushing yards, 95 receiving yards, 102 kickoff return yards) and one touchdown scored, but it was vastly overshadowed by his runner-up in the Heisman, Vince Young, and Bush's teammate LenDale White, who led USC in rushing with 123 yards and 3 touchdowns. This game gave Bush a total of 2,890 all-purpose yards for the season, the most ever by a USC player, and 19 touchdowns.

In celebration of their stellar careers, Bush and Leinart appeared on the cover of the December 25, 2005 issue of Sports Illustrated; the magazine anointed the pair as the "Best in College Football" in 2005.

He was featured on the cover of NCAA Football 2007[5], released on July 18, 2006.

Reggie Bush finished the 2005 football season nationally-ranked in several statistical categories:

* All Purpose Yards per Game: 10th

* Rushing Yards per Game: 9th

* Points Scored: 7th

* Yards per Punt Return: 8th

* Yards per Carry: 1st

On January 12, 2006 he announced that he would forego his final year of NCAA eligilibity and enter the 2006 NFL Draft where he was expected to be among the first few selections. On April 2, 2006 during USC's Pro Day workouts Bush ran his 40 yard dash in 4.33 seconds, had a standing broad jump of 10-foot-9 (3.28 m), a vertical leap of 40.5 inches (103 cm) and did 24 repetitions in the 225-pound (102 kg) bench press.

On April 26, 2006, three days prior to the 2006 NFL Draft, he signed a multiyear endorsement with the athletic sportswear company Adidas, where he will promote football and training clothes and even launch cleats in 2007.

On April 28, 2006, it was announced that Mario Williams signed a deal with the Houston Texans, meaning that Bush would not be the first draft pick. Bush's representatives spoke that night with the New Orleans Saints, who said they intended to use their second overall pick to select the USC product.

Reggie Bush was indeed drafted by the Saints with the second overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft. The Houston Texans' decision to not take Bush was derided by many sports analysts. ESPN commentator Len Pasquarelli claimed that Houston selecting Williams ahead of Bush was one of the biggest mistakes made in NFL Draft history.

It has been reported by Oregonian writers Jim Beseda & Paul Bucker that Bush put in a good word with the Saints' execs for former Pac-10 rival and Fred Biletnikoff Award winner Mike Hass, contributing to Hass being drafted by the Saints in the 6th round. It had also been reported that Bush requested for Hass to be his roommate at rookie camp, but Bush ended up rooming with someone else.

Bush's selection by the New Orleans Saints in the NFL draft generated much excitement and celebration among Saints fans, many of whom were still grappling with the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina. By the end of the week after the draft, Reebok reported receiving over 15,000 orders for Bush's Saints jersey, even though his jersey number with the Saints had not yet been determined. Bush had petitioned the NFL to wear number 5 on his jersey, which he has worn throughout his high school and college careers. However, in order for him to wear #5, the NFL would have to revise its numbering regulations, which require running backs to wear a number between 20 and 49. Bush was allowed to wear the number 5, at least temporarily, during the Saints' minicamp practices pending the NFL's ruling. On May 23, the NFL competition committee officially rejected his request, and on May 25, it was officially announced that Bush would be wearing number 25, acquired from Saints running back Fred McAfee. Although Bush had earlier pledged to donate a quarter of the money he receives from jersey sales to Katrina victims if allowed to wear #5, he later said he would make that donation no matter what number he wears. As part of the deal with McAfee to wear #25, Bush agreed to allocate half of that money to charities of McAfee's choosing. McAfee pledged to donate his share to Katrina victims in his home state of Mississippi.

Amazed by the warm reception he received from the fans in New Orleans, as well as the magnitude of the devastation caused there by Hurricane Katrina, Bush expressed excitement about playing with the Saints and has pledged to help the city recover from the hurricane. On May 15, 2006, Bush donated $50,000 to help a local Catholic school for students with learning disabilities from closing.

On April 24, 2006, a week before the 2006 NFL Draft, a report surfaced raising questions about whether Bush's family received improper benefits during Bush's final college season. The questions involved a home valued at $757,000 located in Spring Valley, California which Reggie Bush's mother, stepfather and brother lived in during the 2005 season. The home was owned by a man with ties to a recently started sports marketing company. If Bush and his family paid less than fair market value on the rental, then this would equate to a gift prohibited by NCAA policies. USC Athletic Director Mike Garrett said the school has requested that the Pacific-10 Conference look into the matter. If Bush is ruled ineligible, USC could be forced to forfeit every game that Bush played in after losing his eligibility. The school could also be put on probation or banned from bowl games but that would likely depend on how much it knew or should have known about any violations. Bush could also potentially risk losing his 2005 Heisman Trophy because the official Heisman ballot states the following: "In order that there will be no misunderstanding regarding the eligibility of a candidate, the recipient of the award must be a bonafide student of an accredited university. The recipient must be in compliance with the bylaws defining an NCAA student." Bush's former teammate Winston Justice has also been linked to this report.

After skipping a mandatory team meeting on July 28, 2006 as part of a contract hold-out, he signed a contract for six years the following day and reported on July 30. The deal includes $ 26.35 million guaranteed and $51 million total. Incentives can bring the deal up to $62 million.Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts.
Virtual Magic is a human knowledge database blog. Text Based On Information From Wikipedia, Under The GNU Free Documentation License. Copyright (c) 2007 Virtual Magic. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

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