Montee Ball finished fourth in the voting for the 77th annual Heisman Memorial Trophy. Baylor's Robert Griffin III won the honor, given to the most outstanding college football player, Saturday evening at the Marriot Marquis in Times Square.
A total of 927 electors voted this year and Ball came in fourth in the voting with 348 points. Griffin led with 1,687 points, followed by Stanford's Andrew Luck (1,407) and Alabama's Trent Richardson (978). Louisiana State's Tyrone Mathieu received a low 327 points. "It's paramount," Griffin said. "To be a part of these guys, be a part of greatness, you can't ask for more."
Luck finished as the runner-up for the second straight season. Ball, who would have been the third Badger to win the honor, will now focus his efforts on the Rose Bowl when Wisconsin plays Oregon on Jan. 2. He is also one touchdown from tying Barry Sander's NCAA single-season mark of 39 set in 1988 at Oklahoma State.
Our earlier story
NEW YORK, N.Y. - Wentzville’s Montee Ball spent the last day in New York City with the four other Heisman Trophy finalists. It’s his first time in the Big Apple.
After a media rush Friday night, the Wisconsin running back was finally was able to unwind and see the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center.
“I love it,” he said of New York. “I love the fast pace. The crowds. I really enjoyed it.”
On Saturday he woke up and conducted more interviews, then walked around in pursuit of a new tie to wear during the Heisman presentation. It’s red, of course, to match his shirt.
“I have to represent the Big Ten and my program,” he said with a smile.
Ball, on the advice of his coaches at Wisconsin and Badger alum Ron Dayne, who won college football’s most coveted prize in 1999, has been trying to soak in the entire experience.
“Hanging out with the rest of the guys was really fun and it’s something I will cherish for the rest of my life,” he said. “I’m enjoying myself.”
Ball spoke Friday with media at an in New York. He was joined by fellow nominees Robert Griffin III from Baylor, Alabama’s Trent Richardson and Louisiana State’s Tyrone Mathieu. Stanford’s Andrew Luck arrived Saturday morning.
Luck spoke on behalf of all four when he said they are team first individuals and wouldn’t be finalists without the help of their supporting staffs.
“My motivation comes from trying to win football games with my team,” said Luck, a quarterback. “At the end of the day I think it’s the wins and loses that count. The Heisman would be an unbelievable award to win. To be here is great, but it’s a reflection of your great team.”
Ball said earlier this week he spoke with football coach Craig Collins.
“He told me good job,” Ball said. “If the opportunity came to win this trophy I’d most definitely bring him up [in the speech] for all the things he’s done for me.”
Ball will find out his Heisman fate this evening at the Marriot Marquis in Times Square.