Former Colorado football star Rashaan Salaam dead at 42

The body found in a Boulder park Monday night was former Colorado football star Rashaan Salaam, the Boulder County coroner said Tuesday.

Rashaan Salaam, left, was found dead at a Boulder park Monday. He was 42. (Sandie Gohoc/Flickr)
Rashaan Salaam, left, was found dead at a Boulder park Monday. He was 42. (Sandie Gohoc/Flickr)
Rashaan Salaam, left, was found dead at a Boulder park Monday. He was 42. (Sandie Gohoc/Flickr)

The body found in a Boulder park Monday night was former Colorado football star Rashaan Salaam, the Boulder County coroner said Tuesday.

Salaam, who won the Heisman Trophy as a running back for the Buffaloes in 1994 and later went on to play for the Chicago Bears, was 42.

A passerby discovered his body at 8:54 p.m. Monday at Eben G. Fine Park. Salaam was pronounced dead at the scene. The Boulder Daily Camera is reporting that the cause of death is suspected to be suicide.

The coroner’s office will conduct an autopsy to determine more.

“Rashaan was as dynamic off the field as he was on the field as a player,” said Broncos Director of Player Personnel Matt Russell, who was Salaam’s teammate at CU from 1992-94. “He was a fiercely loyal friend, someone who was always in your corner and had your back. He was the ultimate teammate and supportive of everyone in his locker room. If there was ever a guy who was going to get a personal foul for protecting someone on his team, Rashaan was that guy.

Rashaan was the ultimate Buffalo and was so proud to be called a ‘Colorado Buffalo.’ We were part of the same recruiting class, what we called ‘nine deuce,’ the Class of 1992. On the field, Rashaan was the definition of a winner. It was important to him. He practiced hard, he played hard and he made our teams better. Rashaan and I laughed a lot after practices because we had so many battles and fights. Even when we last saw each other a few years ago at the CU Hall of Fame induction, we still shared those great memories and had a lot of laughs from our time together at Colorado.”

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Christian Clark

Author: Christian Clark

Christian Clark covers sports. He's worked for outlets that include the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, The Oklahoman, Columbia Missourian and Dave Campbell's Texas Football magazine. He likes music and Mexican food. Lots and lots of Mexican food. Got questions? Tips? You can reach him at cclark@denverite.com.