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Butkus Award adds its float to watch list parade

Von Miller Butkus Award

(Don’t worry folks.  There are only three more of these — Davey O’Brien, Doak Walker, Walter Camp — to go.  Hang in there.  We’ll get through this.)

The Butkus Award Thursday was the latest in a long line of awards/trophies releasing their preseason watch lists for 2011, with 51 linebackers from across the country receiving recognition by the award that annually honors the best player at their position.

Luke Kuechly of Boston College is the only returning finalist, while Dont’a Hightower of Alabama, Sean Spence of Miami (Fla.), Travis Lewis of Oklahoma, Keenan Robinson of Texas and Manti Te’o of Notre Dame are returning semifinalists.

The SEC and ACC topped all conferences with nine nods apiece, followed by the Big 12 with eight and five each for the Big Ten and Pac-12.

As far as individuals schools are concerned, Alabama was tops with three — Hightower, Nico Johnson and Courtney Upshaw.  Florida, Miami, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Southern Miss, TCU, Texas and Wisconsin all had two players apiece named to the list.

The Butkus Award is named in honor of Dick Butkus, the former Illinois and Chicago Bears linebacking great.  The 51 players on the initial watch list represent the number Butkus wore throughout his Hall of Fame career.

Semi-finalists will be named October 24, finalists November 22, and winners will be notified on or before December 7.  Last year’s winner was Texas A&M’s Von Miller.

Here is the complete list of 2011 preseason Butkus watch listers:

Dont’a Hightower, Alabama
Nico Johnson, Alabama
Courtney Upshaw, Alabama
Vontaze Burflict, Arizona State
Jerry Franklin,Arkansas
Luke Kuechly, Boston College
Dwayne Woods, Bowling Green University
Mychal Kendricks, Cal
Jon Bostic, Florida
Jelani Jenkins, Florida
Nigel Bradham, Florida State
Corey Paredes, Hawaii
Tyler Nielsen, Iowa
Jake Knott, Iowa State
Arthur Brown, Kansas State
Danny Trevathan, Kentucky
Ryan Baker, LSU
Kenny Tate, Maryland
Ramon Buchanan, Miami (Fla.)
Sean Spence, Miami (Fla.)
Zaviar Gooden, Missouri
Lavonte David, Nebraska
James-Michael Johnson, Nevada
Carmen Messina, New Mexico
Zach Brown, North Carolina
Kevin Reddick, North Carolina
Audie Cole, North Carolina State
Darius Fleming, Notre Dame
Manti Te’o, Notre Dame
Travis Lewis, Oklahoma
Tom Wort, Oklahoma
Josh Kaddu, Oregon
Michael Mauti, Penn State
Max Gruder, Pittsburgh
Miles Burris, San Diego State
Jamie Collins, Southern Miss.
Korey Williams, Southern Miss.
Shayne Skov, Stanford
Tanner Brock, TCU
Tank Carder, TCU
Tahir Whitehead, Temple
Emmanuel Acho, Texas
Keenan Robinson, Texas
Garrick Williams, Texas A&M
Marvin Burdette, UAB
Chris Galippo, USC
Bobby Wagner, Utah State
Chris Marve, Vanderbilt
Bruce Taylor, Virginia Tech
Chris Borland, Wisconsin
Mike Taylor, Wisconsin

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2 Responses to “Butkus Award adds its float to watch list parade”
  1. polegojim says: Jul 14, 2011 10:55 PM

    Finally!
    A legitimate award worth watching out for!

    One year soon, we’ll have a front runner.

    In Hoke We Trust – Go BLUE!

  2. paulbrownsrevenge says: Jul 15, 2011 11:56 PM

    yea, sure as hell won’t be this year Meeeshigun. Mike Martin makes every tackle from DT. How many points did you give up to UMASS???? i think 37

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