The Heisman Memorial Trophy Award (usually known colloquially as the Heisman Trophy or the Heisman), is awarded annually to the player deemed the most outstanding player in collegiate football. It was created in 1935 as the Downtown Athletic Club trophy and renamed in 1936 following the death of the Club's athletic director, John Heisman (former Brown University and University of Pennsylvania player; head football coach at Auburn University, Clemson University, Rice University, and the University of Pennsylvania; and football, basketball, and baseball head coach and athletic director at Georgia Tech).
The award is presented by the Heisman Trophy Trust in early December before the postseason bowl games. It is the oldest of several overall awards in college football, including the Maxwell Award, Walter Camp Award, and the AP Player of the Year. The Heisman and the AP Player of the Year are the only awards to honor the most outstanding player, while the Maxwell Award and Walter Camp Award recognize the best player.