Juwon Young

Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Butkus Award names 51 linebackers to 2018 watch list

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College football watch list season resumed Monday with the release of the Butkus Award and Jim Thorpe Award watch lists. The Butkus Award watch list named 51 linebackers to its preseason list, including players from 41 different schools.

This year’s watch list is highlighted by finalists for the 2017 Butkus Award in Devin Bush of Michigan and T.J. Edwards of Wisconsin. Josh Allen of Kentucky and Cameron Smith of USC are also on the list after being a semi-finalist last year. Former high school Butkus Award winners Caleb Kelly of Oklahoma and Dylan Moses of Alabama also were named to the list.

Alabama and Wisconsin lead the nation with three Butkus Award watch list players each. Ryan Connelly and Andrew Van Ginkel join Edwards of Wisconsin and Anfernee Jennings and Mack Wilson of Alabama are also included.

The list will be trimmed down to a list of semi-finalists on October 29 and then down to a smaller list of finalists on November 19. Georgia running back Roquan Smith won the award last year.

2018 Butkus Award Watch List

Curtis Akins, Memphis
Otaro Alaka, Texas A&M
Josh Allen, Kentucky
Jeffrey Allison, Fresno State
Azeez Al-Shaair, Florida Atlantic
Joe Bachie, Michigan State
Markus Bailey, Purdue
Thomas Barber, Minnesota
Bryton Barr, Massachusetts
Tevis Bartlett, Washington
Devin Bush, Michigan
Josh Buss, Montana
Te’von Coney, Notre Dame
Ryan Connelly, Wisconsin
Deshaun Davis, Auburn
Troy Dye, Oregon
Koa Farmer, Penn State
Paddy Fisher, Northwestern
Joe Giles-Harris, Duke
Dre Greenlaw, Arkansas
Porter Gustin, USC
Nate Hall, Northwestern
Terez Hall, Missouri
Terrill Hanks, New Mexico State
Darius Harris, Middle Tennessee
De’Jon Harris, Arkansas
Khalil Hodge, Buffalo
Justin Hollins, Oregon
Oluwaseun Idowu, Pitt
Anfernee Jennings, Alabama
Gary Johnson, Texas
Kendall Joseph, Clemson
Caleb Kelly, Oklahoma
Jordan Kunaszyk, California
Tre Lamar, Clemson
Dylan Moses, Alabama
Bobby Okereke, Stanford
Justin Phillips, Oklahoma State
Germaine Pratt, N.C. State
Shaq Quarterman, Miami
David Reese, Florida
Cameron Smith, USC
Ty Summers, TCU
Jahlani Tavai, Hawaii
Drue Tranquill, Notre Dame
Andrew Van Ginkel, Wisconsin
D’Andre Walker, Georgia
Devin White, LSU
Mack Wilson, Alabama
Juwon Young, Marshall

Miami LB Raphael Kirby’s career ends following injury

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Miami’s 30-20 victory over Virginia Tech this weekend came at a price. Senior linebacker Raphael Kirby injured his right knee while making a play and will now miss the remainder of the 2015 season as a result. Miami head coach Al Golden announced the news during his weekly day-after teleconference, per The Miami Herald.

“I’m crushed,” Golden said. “Raphael represents what we want in a Miami Hurricane. He’s a leader. He’s unselfish. He holds his teammates accountable, and he’s a big part of who we are.”

Kirby played in 39 games for the Hurricanes, ending his career with 124 tackles. His senior season ends now with a team-leading 44 tackles. The loss of Kirby is the third at the linebacker position this season for the Hurricanes, with Darrion Owens and Marques Gayot also out due to injuries.

“We are tremendously disappointed for Raphael,” Golden said. “He is the true definition of a leader on the field, in the community and in the classroom. His commitment to our team and our goals has been unquestioned over his career, and he will be sorely missed. We will support Raphael through his recovery as we continue to lean on his leadership for our team.”

Miami will look to fill Kirby’s spot on the field with either Trent Harris or Juwon Young.