Charles White, a dynamic tailback for the University of Southern California who set the school’s career record for rushing yardage and won the 1979 Heisman Trophy died Wednesday, in Newport Beach, Calif. He was 64.

JudianneWhite-Basch was his ex-wife and his care manager. at a Hospital, was the esophageal carcinoma.

White, who went on to play eight seasons in the N.F.L., was part of U.S.C.’s lineage of elite running backs, four of whom also won the Heisman: Marcus Allen, O.J. Simpson, Mike Garrett, and Reggie Bush. White’s 6,245 rushing yards exceed the 4,810 gained by Allen, who ranks second on U.S.C.’s all-time list.

White wasn’t particularly fast or large. He bulled through defenders rather than trying to evade them. White was a good man. a workhorse: In 1978, he rushed 374 times (65 more than anyone else in the N.C.A.A.’s top ranks) for 1,859 yards. He ran 2,050 yards the next year.

His high school pummeling experience, at U.S.C. U.S.C. took a Physical toll a He suffered cumulative beatings to the head. According to Ms. White Basch, in 2012, he was diagnosed as having dementia. a Chronic traumatic Encephalopathy: a A degenerative brain condition that can be linked to head trauma and diagnosed after death.

“Suddenly, everything made sense,” She said: a Phone interview

Ms. White-Basch donated her former husband’s brain to the CTE Center at Boston University, to find out if he has C.T.E.

Ms. White Basch suggested it could be possible that he had used alcohol and cocaine to treat his symptoms. a brain injury. “Everyone was targeting him” She said that she was on the field. “And he gave hits that were as hard as the hits he was getting.”

White was accused of being under the influence in 1987 while playing for Los Angeles Rams. a Controlled substance, thought to be cocaine. He had been admitted for treatment. a In 1982, he was on a month-long program while with Browns. He was expelled by the N.F.L. for 30 days in 1988. For using alcohol a He was in violation of the drug league program that he had signed when he was taken into custody.

Charles Raymond White, born Jan. 22, 1958 in Los Angeles, was raised by Bertha Leggett. From San Fernando High School, he was transferred to the U.S.C. He was the leader of the team’s rushing efforts in 1978, 1979 and 1978.

After the 1978 regular season, White won the Rose Bowl with the crucial touchdown. a In the second quarter, he disputed a play at the Michigan 3-yard line. Before he could reach the goal line, he fumbled with the ball. Michigan claimed possession, according to the umpire. However, the line judge adjudged it was Michigan’s ball. a touchdown. After that, the head linesman affirmed it as a score.

The touchdown extended U.S.C.’s lead to 14-3, which held up in a 17-10 win, and the school was named college football’s national champion in a Poll of 35 coaches.

White was incandescent in the next year’s Rose Bowl against Ohio State. U.S.C. was lifted when White ran for 247 yard on 39 carries. He also scored the winning touchdown at 1:32. He was able to rush for 247 yards on 39 carries and scored the winning touchdown with 1 minute 32 seconds remaining in the game, lifting U.S.C. a 17-16 victory.

“Charlie White is the best football player I’ve ever seen,” John Robinson (the U.S.C. The coach said this after the game. “If you don’t believe me, just go back and look at the fourth quarter. His domination was absolute. He is the greatest competitor I have ever seen.”

In the N.F.L’s first round, White was selected by the Cleveland Browns. In the 1980 draft, White was selected by the Cleveland Browns. He ran for 342 yards in just four seasons. Robinson signed him to the Rams for 1985 after he had been released by Browns.

Although his first two years with the Rams were not memorable, he performed spectacularly in 1987 when he carried the ball 324 more times. a League-leading 1,374 yards with 11 touchdowns But the season was marred by a 24-day players’ strike, during which games were played largely by nonunion replacements for three weeks. White was one. a group of players who crossed the union’s picket lines.

In 1988, Bell was serving a four-game suspension. He never returned to his original job. Greg Bell was the Rams’ leading rusher with 1,212 yards. He only gained 323 yards in 1988.

White retired following the season, and lived the rest of his life in the United States for the next 20. at U.S.C. As a special assistant to the athletic director, Mike McGee; the football team’s running backs coach; and as a University administrator. Ms. White Basch stated that during the period he used cocaine, but not alcohol.

According to him, he was able to sell his home in 2000. Heisman Tax debts settled with a trophy for $184,000

Neben Ms. White Basch, he is survived also by his three daughters, Tara, Sophia and Nicole White, their sons Julian and Ashton, as well as their granddaughter Giovanna Hemmen, whom he was very close to.

White was the subject a Profile in The Los Angeles Times, last year. Columnist Bill Plaschke describes his peaceful life at an assisted living facility.

“He knows he is Charles White and he knows what he accomplished for his beloved university,” Plaschke then wrote and quoted Plaschke as saying. “I know I once did something good, something great, something fantastic for U.S.C.”