Winning the Heisman Trophy was easy. The hard part for Troy Smith was staying composed.
To the surprise of no one, the Ohio State quarterback was the runaway winner of the award that honors college football's best player.
Seconds after his name was called Saturday night, he hugged everyone important in his life -- coaches and family -- let out a deep, deep sigh and headed for the podium.
"Normally, I'm pretty cool in pressure situations, but my heart is pounding so fast now," he said.
Smith received 801 first-place votes and won the Heisman by 1,662 points -- both the second-best marks in the 72 seasons the award has been given.
Arkansas running back Darren McFadden finished second, Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn was third and West Virginia running back Steve Slaton was fourth.
Only O.J. Simpson's 1,750-point victory in 1968 was more lopsided than Smith's.
"I haven't spent that much time dreaming about it," Smith said of winning the Heisman. "But I'll be dreaming about it tonight. It's pretty cool."
The senior moved to the front of the Heisman race in September with a flawless performance against Texas and finished off a perfect regular season by throwing four touchdown passes against Michigan.
Now, there's only one thing left for Smith to do: beat Florida for the national championship on Jan. 8.
A smile lighted up Smith's face when his name was announced. After getting a hug and handshake from Quinn, Smith headed to the row of chairs directly behind him, where his mother, Tracy, and sister, Brittany, were sitting.
They each took turns giving Smith a big squeeze. But Smith wasn't done with the hugs -- one for Ohio State Coach Jim Tressel and another for his high school coach, Ted Ginn Sr.
The 22-year-old Smith is the sixth player from Ohio State to win the Heisman and first since tailback Eddie George in 1995. And it's the school's seventh Heisman -- Archie Griffin won two in 1974-75 -- tying USC and Notre Dame for the most.
"Now I'm part of that elite group," Smith said.
Smith received 86.7% of the first-place votes, a record, and his point total of 2,540 places third in Heisman history behind Simpson (2,853) and fellow USC tailback Reggie Bush, who had 2,541 last season
Just like USC's Bush and Matt Leinart, and Oklahoma's Jason White in '03, Smith will play for the national title as a Heisman winner.
"I'm still in awe over this situation," he said, sporting a dark three-piece suit with red pinstripes and a Buckeyes scarlet and gray tie.
Once known more for his speed and elusiveness, Smith has become the consummate pocket passer, fourth in the nation in passer rating (167.9) with 2,507 yards passing and 30 touchdown passes.
He heads into the BCS championship game 25-2 as a starter.
"Finally, now that's out of the way," Smith said. "Now let's move on to preparation for the University of Florida and the national championship."
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Heisman roll call
A complete list of the winners of college football's top individual award:
*--* Year Winner Pos. School 2006 Troy Smith QB Ohio State 2005 Reggie Bush RB USC 2004 Matt Leinart QB USC 2003 Jason White QB Oklahoma 2002 Carson Palmer QB USC 2001 Eric Crouch QB Nebraska 2000 Chris Weinke QB Florida State 1999 Ron Dayne RB Wisconsin 1998 Ricky Williams RB Texas 1997 Charles Woodson CB Michigan 1996 Danny Wuerffel QB Florida 1995 Eddie George TB Ohio State 1994 Rashaan Salaam RB Colorado 1993 Charlie Ward QB Florida State 1992 Gino Torretta QB Miami 1991 Desmond Howard WR Michigan 1990 Ty Detmer QB Brigham Young 1989 Andre Ware QB Houston 1988 Barry Sanders RB Oklahoma State 1987 Tim Brown WR Notre Dame 1986 Vinny Testaverde QB Miami 1985 Bo Jackson TB Auburn 1984 Doug Flutie QB Boston College 1983 Mike Rozier TB Nebraska 1982 Herschel Walker HB Georgia 1981 Marcus Allen TB USC 1980 George Rogers HB South Carolina 1979 Charles White TB USC 1978 Billy Sims HB Oklahoma 1977 Earl Campbell FB Texas 1976 Tony Dorsett HB Pittsburgh 1975 Archie Griffin HB Ohio State 1974 Archie Griffin HB Ohio State 1973 John Cappelletti HB Penn State 1972 Johnny Rodgers FL Nebraska 1971 Pat Sullivan QB Auburn 1970 Jim Plunkett QB Stanford 1969 Steve Owens HB Oklahoma 1968 O.J. Simpson TB USC 1967 Gary Beban QB UCLA 1966 Steve Spurrier QB Florida 1965 Mike Garrett TB USC 1964 John Huarte QB Notre Dame 1963 Roger Staubach QB Navy 1962 Terry Baker QB Oregon State 1961 Ernie Davis HB Syracuse 1960 Joe Bellino HB Navy 1959 Billy Cannon HB Louisiana State 1958 Pete Dawkins HB Army 1957 John David Crow HB Texas A&M; 1956 Paul Hornung QB Notre Dame 1955 Howard Cassady HB Ohio State 1954 Alan Ameche FB Wisconsin 1953 John Lattner HB Notre Dame 1952 Billy Vessels HB Oklahoma 1951 Dick Kazmaier HB Princeton 1950 Vic Janowicz HB Ohio State 1949 Leon Hart E Notre Dame 1948 Doak Walker HB SMU 1947 John Lujack QB Notre Dame 1946 Glenn Davis HB Army 1945 Doc Blanchard HB Army 1944 Les Horvath QB Ohio State 1943 Angelo Bertelli QB Notre Dame 1942 Frank Sinkwich HB Georgia 1941 Bruce Smith HB Minnesota 1940 Tom Harmon HB Michigan 1939 Nile Kinnick HB Iowa 1938 Davey O'Brien QB Texas Christian 1937 Clint Frank HB Yale 1936 Larry Kelley E Yale 1935 Jay Berwanger HB Chicago
Source: Associated Press
Join the club
Troy Smith's Heisman Trophy win means Ohio State joins USC and Notre Dame with the most trophies, at seven:
*--* OHIO STATE 2006, Troy Smith; 1995, Eddie George; 1975 Archie Griffin; 1974 Archie Griffin; 1955, Howard Cassady; 1950, Vic Janowicz; 1944, Les Horvath. USC 2005, Reggie Bush; 2004, Matt Leinart; 2002, Carson Palmer; 1981, Marcus Allen; 1979, Charles White; 1968, O.J. Simpson; 1965, Mike Garrett. NOTRE DAME 1987, Tim Brown; 1964, John Huarte; 1956, Paul Hornung; 1953, John Lattner; 1949, Leon Hart; 1947, John Lujack; 1943, Angelo Bertelli.
Los Angeles Times
Ohio State's Troy Smith received 2,540 total Heisman votes, Arkansas' Darren McFadden 878 and Notre Dame's Brady Quinn 782. The regional breakdown:
*--* FAR WEST 1. Troy Smith 389 2. Brady Quinn 133 3. Darren McFadden 98 SOUTHWEST 1. Troy Smith 447 2. Darren McFadden 209 3. Brady Quinn 119 MIDWEST 1. Troy Smith 451 2. Brady Quinn 151 3. Darren McFadden 120
*--* SOUTH 1. Troy Smith 409 2. Darren McFadden 227 3. Brady Quinn 96 MID-ATLANTIC 1. Troy Smith 413 2. Darren McFadden 117 3. Brady Quinn 112 NORTHEAST 1. Troy Smith 431 2. Brady Quinn 171 3. Darren McFadden 107
Source: Associated Press