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Coroner’s office: Rashaan Salaam’s death a suicide

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Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Boulder, CO, United States (4E Sports) – The Boulder County Coroner’s Office reported that Rashaan Salaam committed suicide, saying the former Heisman Trophy winner died due to a gunshot wound to the head.

The body of 41-year-old Salaam, who won the Heisman Trophy in 1994 while playing for the Colorado Buffaloes, was found in a parking lot at Eben G. Fine Park on Dec. 5.

After Salaam’s body was found, Boulder Police spokeswoman Shannon Cordingly said there were no signs of foul play. Police told Salaam’s mother, Khalada , they suspected suicide after finding a note.

The park was less than 2 miles from Folsom Field, where Salaam starred as a running back for the University of Colorado. Salaam was picked in the first round of the 1995 draft, 21st overall, by the Chicago Bears.

The Buffaloes will honor Salaam Thursday night at the Alamo Bowl with a decal, displaying his initials above the No. 19 he wore at Colorado. Colorado will play Oklahoma State in San Antonio.

In 1994, Salaam rushed for 2,055 yards and 24 touchdowns en route to the Heisman Trophy.

During his rookie season with the Bears, he became the youngest player in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards. He was 21 years, 77 days old. He rushed for 1,074 and 10 touchdowns that season.

However, injuries and fumbles plagued Salaam’s professional career. He was cut by the Bears in 1998 and signed as a free agent with the Oakland Raiders in 1999, but he was cut.

Salaam landed in Cleveland later that year and played two games for the Browns. He also was a member of the Green Bay Packers’ practice squad. Salaam also briefly played for the XFL Memphis Maniax in 2001.

Salaam launched a comeback attempt in 2002 and was signed by the San Francisco 49ers in 2003, but he was released before the season.

He signed with the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts in February 2004 but was suspended that May, ending his professional career.

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