Former Heisman Trophy winner and NFL running back Rashaan Salaam has died, the University of Colorado announced today. He was 42.
Salaam was found dead in a park in Boulder, Colo., on Monday night, the school said. There were no signs of foul play.
Salaam’s death stunned the entire Colorado football and university community.
“The Buff Family has lost an outstanding young man and a great Buff today,” Athletic Director Rick George said. “We are heartbroken for Rashaan and his family and our thoughts and prayers are with them at this very difficult time.”
As a junior, Salaam led Bill McCartney’s 1994 Buffaloes to one of the best seasons in Colorado history, an 11-1 finish that included a 41-24 win over Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl and a No. 3 ranking in the final polls. It is still the second-best finish ever by a CU team.
Salaam starred at Colorado for three seasons, winning the Heisman trophy as a junior in 1994. He then declared for the NFL draft and was selected 21st overall in the first round by the Chicago Bears.