On Monday, senior linebacker Darien Butler was named one of 16 semifinalist for the 2021 Butkus Award. The award named after College Football Hall of Fame and Pro Football Hall of Fame linebacker Dick Butkus is given to the nation’s top collegiate linebacker at the FBS level. The likes of Luke Kuechly, Von Miller and Patrick Willis have won the award.
Despite the fact that the Arizona State season has soured a bit the past month, Butler has been a defensive playmaker all season. He is the team leader in tackles (50), tackles for loss (7.0), and interceptions (3) has been all over the field through eight games.
Also on the list is Alabama’s Christian Harris, Cincinnati’s Darrian Beavers, Colorado’s Nate Landman, Georgia’s Nakobe Dean, Iowa’s Jack Campbell, LSU’s Damone Clark, Oklahoma’s Brian Asamoah, Oklahoma State’s Malcolm Rodriquez, Oregon’s Noah Sewell, Penn State’s Brandon Smith, Rutgers’ Olakunle Fatukasi, Texas’ DeMarvion Overshown, Utah’s Devin Lloyd, Wisconsin’s Leo Chenal and Wyoming’s Chad Muma.
Finalists in both divisions are expected to be announced November 22, and winners on or before December 7.