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WATCH LIST: Butkus Award releases preseason watch list

By Tom Fornelli | College Football Writer

Butkus Award watch list
UCLA's Myles Jack is the best linebacker/running back on this list. (USATSI)

The parade of preseason watch lists continues with the Butkus Award. The Butkus Award is given annually to the best linebacker in college football. Last year's recipient was Alabama's C.J. Mosley, and while he can't win it again this season since he's moved on to the NFL, one of the 51 players listed on the award's preseason watch list just might.

While UCLA's Myles Jack is probably the preseason favorite to win the award at this point, a lot of things can happen between now and the trophy being awarded. Of the 51 players on the list all come from the FBS level save for one.

Harvard's Zach Hodges made the list, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say he's not going to win it. I know, it's a bold statement, but I'll stand behind it.

As is normally the case, the SEC leads the way with nine players on the list, followed by the Pac-12 with eight.

Stephone Anthony, Clemson
Kelby Brown, Duke
Yannik Cudjoe-Virgil, Maryland
Dyshawn Davis, Syracuse
Aaron Davis, Colorado State
Paul Dawson, TCU
Trey DePriest, Alabama
Steve Edmond, Texas
Kyler Fackrell, Utah State
Maurice Falls, East Carolina
Leonard Floyd, Georgia
Kris Frost, Auburn
Alani Fua, BYU
Jarrett Grace, Notre Dame
Curtis Grant, Ohio State
Bryce Hager, Baylor
Ben Heeney, Kansas
Jordan Hicks, Texas
Zach Hodges, Harvard
Mike Hull, Penn State
Myles Jack, UCLA
Jordan Jenkins, Georgia
A.J. Johnson, Tennessee
Taiwan Jones, Michigan State
Eric Kendricks, UCLA
Hau'oli Kikaha, Washington
Derrick Malone, Oregon
Tyler Matakevich, Temple
Derrick Matthews, Houston
Lorenzo Mauldin, Louisville
Benardrick McKinney, Mississippi State
Braylon Mitchell, Arkansas
Mason Monheim, Illinois
Mike Orakpo, Texas State
Norkeithus Otis, North Carolina
Denzel Perryman, Miami (Fla.)
Terrance Plummer, UCF
Sunny Puetasi, Wyoming
Hayes Pullard, USC
Reggie Ragland, Alabama
Jake Ryan, Michigan
Stephon Sanders, SMU
Frank Shannon, Oklahoma
Jaylon Smith, Notre Dame
Terrance Smith, Florida State
Eric Striker, Oklahoma
A.J. Tarpley, Stanford
John Tavai, USC
Shaq Thompson, Washington
James Vaughters, Stanford
Ramik Wilson, Georgia

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