Heisman Memorial Trophy Design

The Heisman Memorial Trophy Award is a statue cast in bronze during a process called bronze medal molding, its finished product standing over a foot tall and weighing twenty-five pounds. The trophy’s figure is depicted as sidestepping and straight-arming an imaginary tackler on his way down-field to score a touchdown.

When the Club Trophy Committee, appointed by the Downtown Athletic Club, set out to visualize an appropriate design for the trophy, its members bypassed the idea of the cup or bowl commonly associated with awards honoring athletic achievement. They wanted their DAC Trophy to have a distinctive look that was all its own as a visual symbol of the athletic talent it would seek to recognize each year. They finally agreed upon the figure of a muscular football player making a dash down the field in pursuit of a touchdown. Once the design was finalized, they decided, they would erect the figure in bronze as a symbolic conveyance of imperishability.

The committee then commissioned sculptor Frank Eliscu to design the trophy, which was modeled in the likeness of Ed Smith, a New York University football player who had been th พนันเว็บ ufabet มือถือ e leading college football player in 1934. To get the pose just right for his figure, Eliscu had developed a rough clay prototype – then after the prototype gained the approval of the Club Trophy Committee, it was passed along for inspection by Jim Crowley, head coach at Fordham University. Eliscu visited the football field on the Rose Hill campus, where Crowley had his players demonstrate the football sidestep, forward drive, and strong arm as the sculptor manipulated the limbs of his prototype until he was satisfied that its pose effectively conveyed their actions – football firmly tucked under the left arm, right stiff-arm outstretched, right leg extended forward in a lunge position. Satisfied with his developments, the sculptor cast the figure in plaster. Upon receiving approval at a 1935 dinner event at the McAlpin Hotel, which was attended by the entire Notre Dame football team and its coach who were all astonished by the utterly lifelike depiction of a football player in action. Thus, the model was approved once and for all, cast in bronze, and presented to the first Heisman Trophy recipient, Jay Berwanger, later in December of that same year – although at that time, the recipient received it as the DAC Trophy.

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