It has been a while since a non-Notre Dame ACC football player won the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker. On Tuesday, eight players who are considered candidates preseason were named to the Butkus Award watch list.
Florida State led the way with two players, as both Jacob Pugh and Matthew Thomas were named to the watch list, which was last claimed by Boston College’s Luke Kuechly in 2011. Notre Dame has won it twice since with Manti Te’o in 2012 and Jaylon Smith in 2015.
The conference’s leading tackler from 2016, Virginia’s Micah Kiser, also is on the watch list. He made 134 tackles last season and was named first-team All-ACC.
The rest of the ACC players on the watch list are as below:
- Tremaine Edmunds, Virginia Tech
- Kendall Joseph, Clemson
- Airius Moore, North Carolina State
- Shaquille Quarterman, Miami (Fla.)
- Trevon Young, Louisville