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Ex-Heisman Trophy winner Rashaan Salaam dead at 42

Former Heisman Trophy winner and NFL player Rashaan Salaam has died suddenly at the age of 42.

Rashaan Salaam, who made a name for himself at Colorado as a Heisman winning running back, has died at the age of 42. Salaam won the Heisman Trophy in his final year at Colorado, also winning top honors in the Doak Walker Award and Walter Campbell Award.

He continued his career in 1995 as the first-round selection of the Chicago Bears. His career there only lasted until 1997, as issues with staying healthy as well has hanging onto the ball plagued him. He was out of the NFL after a stint with the Browns in 1999, but attempted a comeback in 2002 with the 49ers.

See more from Rashaan Salaam's career:

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Rashaan Salaam's career
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Rashaan Salaam's career
FEB 9 1992; Special to the Denver Post, John Epperson Auths. -- San Diego High school football player Rashaam Salaam during a game earlier this year. 1992; Salaam, Rashaan (Photo By The Denver Post via Getty Images)
30 OCT 1993: COLORADO RUNNING BACK RASHAAN SALLAM CARRIES THE BALL DURING THE BUFFALOES 21-17 LOSS TO THE NEBRASKA CORNHUSKERS AT FOLSOM FIELD IN BOULDER, CO. Mandatory Credit: Tim Defrisco/ALLSPORT
Colorado tailback Rashaan Salaam, stands with the Heisman Trophy, College Football's highest award, at the Downtown Athletic Club in New York December 10 after being named the outstanding college football player oF1994
2 JAN 1995: COLORADO''S RASHAAN SALAAM #19 TRIES TO TURN THE CORNER AGAINST THE NOTRE DAME DEFENSE DURING THE THIRD QUARTER OF THE FIESTA BOWL AT SUN DEVIL STADIUM IN TEMPE, ARIZONA. Mandatory Credit: Otto Greule/ALLSPORT
8 Oct 1995: Running back Rashaan Salaam of the Chicago Bears looks on during a game against the Carolina Panthers at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears won the game, 31-27. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Daniel /Allsport
8 Oct 1995: Running back Rashaan Salaam #31 celebrates with teammate wide receiver Curtis Conway during the Bears 31-27 win over the Carolina Panthers at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Allsport
1996: Running back Rashaan Salaam #31 of the Chicago Bears poses for a 1996 photo. (Photo by Andy Hayt/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears running back Rashaan Salaam running past Green Bay Packers safety LeRoy Butler during a game on October 6, 1996 in Chicago. Green Bay won the game 37-6. (Photo by Albert Dickson/Sporting News via Getty Images)
22 Aug 1997: Running back Rashaan Salaam of the Chicago Bears looks on during a pre-season game against the New Orleans Saints at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Saints won the game 13-7.
1 Sep 1997: Running back Rashaan Salaam #31 of the Chicago Bears tries to run around Brian Williams #51 of the Green Bay Packers during the Bears 38-24 loss at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Daniel /Allsport
KANSAS CITY, MO - AUGUST 9: The Kansas City Chiefs defense brings down running back Rashaan Salaam #21 of the San Francisco 49ers at Arrowhead Stadium on August 9, 2003 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. The 49ers defeated the Chiefs 24-6. (Photo by Dave Kaup/Getty Images)
(L-R) NFL player Rashaan Salaam and guest arrive on the red carpet at the 17th annual ESPY Awards held at Nokia Theatre LA Live on July 15, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. The 17th annual ESPYs will air on Sunday, July 19 at 9PM ET on ESPN. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
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Salaam's football career existed outside of the NFL, as he played in the short-lived XFL before his failed comeback in 2002. His NFL career was hardly forgettable, as he rushed for over 1,000 yards in his rookie year, showing off what he could have been had he been able to conquer his other issues.

ESPN's Adam Scheffer reported that Salaam was found dead in a park by police in Boulder. No signs of foul play were present at the scene of his death.

Without a doubt, Salaam will be best remembered for his years at Colorado. He was at times the most dominant player in college football during his last years with the school, and will forever be a member of the illustrious Heisman club.

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