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Jabrill Peppers hopes to become first Michigan Heisman winner since 1997

Dec 9, 2016

The University of Michigan hasn't had a Heisman Trophy winner since 1997, but that could change this weekend.

The trophy will be awarded Saturday night in New York and Michigan's Jabrill Peppers is one of five finalists. 

If he wins, he'll become the first Wolverine to win college football's top individual honor since Charles Woodson won in 1997.

Peppers has become college football's Swiss-Army knife.

While he's primarily a linebacker and defensive back for the Wolverines, Peppers is also one of the nation's top punt and kick-off returners. On top of those duties, he saw time as a running back this season, gaining 167 yards rushing and scoring three touchdowns, caught two passes, and came in as a quarterback when Michigan used the Wildcat formation.

The other finalists include Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson and Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson. Watson was also a finalist in 2015. Rounding out the field are two Oklahoma teammates: quarterback Baker Mayfield and wide receiver Dede Westbrook.

Peppers is the first Wolverine to be a finalist since Chris Perry in 2003.

The three Heisman winners in U of M history are Woodson (1997), Desmond Howard (1991) and Tom Harmon (1940).