Aug. 19, 2004
The Downtown Athletic Club of Orlando, Inc. (DACO), the organization which annually presents the prestigious Butkus Award® to the nation's best collegiate linebacker has announced the preliminary list of 65 candidates for this year's award. The Butkus Award® and the Downtown Athletic Club of Orlando, Inc. are celebrating their 20h anniversary. UCLA junior linebackers Justin London and Spencer Havner have both been named on the list. London is the Bruins' top returning tackler with 98 stops, including 8.5 for losses, while Havner made 82 tackles, including 6.5 for losses. Both made three interceptions in 2003. The Butkus Award® Watch List will be trimmed to 10 semi-finalists on Thursday, October 14. That list will be cut down to three finalists which will be announced via a national teleconference with players, coaches, media members and Butkus Award® officials on Thursday, November 11. The winner will be announced Friday, December 10, 2004. The Butkus Award® will be presented to the winner by the award's namesake former University of Illinois and Chicago Bear NFL Hall of Fame member, Dick Butkus. The finalists, their coaches and families are invited to attend the Butkus Award® Gala festivities including a welcome reception, golf tournament and silent auction. This year's Watch List includes 65 noteworthy candidates that represent schools and conferences from across the nation. The independent selection committee for the 2004 Butkus Award®, comprised of 30 of the nation's foremost national media members, is solely responsible for all voting in the selection process. Selection Committee members have already started evaluating the candidates and will continue their review throughout the entire football season. Additional Watch List candidates may be added in the coming weeks. Voting for the three Butkus Award® finalists and the Butkus Award® winner will be conducted by confidential ballots of the selection committee. The Butkus Award ® is regarded as one of the most elite individual honors in college football. Past recipients include such outstanding linebackers as: Teddy Lehman (2003-Oklahoma); E.J. Henderson (2002-Maryland); Rocky Calmus (2001-Oklahoma); Dan Morgan (2000-U. of Miami); LaVar Arrington (1999-Penn State); Chris Claiborne (1998-Southern California); Andy Katzenmoyer (1997-Ohio State); Matt Russell (1996 Colorado); Kevin Hardy (1995-Illinois); Dana Howard (1994-Illinois); Trev Alberts (1993-Nebraska); Marvin Jones (1992-Florida State); Erick Anderson (1991-Michigan); Alfred Williams (1990-Colorado); Percy Snow (1989-Michigan State); Derrick Thomas (1988-Alabama); Paul McGowan (1997-Florida State); and Brian Bosworth (1985 and 1986-Oklahoma). Created in 1985 by the Downtown Athletic Club of Orlando Inc., the Butkus Award® carries the name and support of one of the greatest middle linebackers in football history, Dick Butkus.