LEXINGTON, Ky. – University of Kentucky senior linebacker Josh Allen has been named a finalist for the 34th annual Butkus Award which honors the best linebacker in America, it was announced today by the Butkus Foundation.
Allen, a 6-foot-5, 260-pound linebacker from Montclair, New Jersey, has been a terror on defense the entire season as he leads the Southeastern Conference and ranks third nationally in sacks (13.0) and leads the league and ranks 11th nationally in tackles for loss (17.5). He also ranks second nationally in forced fumbles (five).
Interesting Allen notes:
- Broke Kentucky single-season and career records for sacks
- First-Team Mid-Season All-America by The Associated Press, ESPN.com, Pro Football Focus and The Athletic
- Four times SEC Defensive Player of the Week this season, including two wins he clinched with a sack, fumble, and UK recovery on the final possession
- Leads UK with 80 total tackles and has five QB hurries, four pass breakups and two fumble recoveries this season
- Helped lead UK to its best regular-season record in 34 years and first winning SEC record in 41 years
- Also a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy as National Defensive Player of the Year
- Current semifinalist for the Walter Camp National Player of the Year, Chuck Bednarik Award as National Defensive Player of the Year and Dick Butkus Award as National Linebacker of the Year; also current quarterfinalist for the Lott Trophy as National Defensive Player of the Year
The winner will be announced on or before December 6. Selection is handled by a panel of 51 coaches, recruiters, scouts and journalists who vote separately and confidentially using a 3-2-1 process, with write-ins allowed. Selectors and selection criteria are posted at www.thebutkusaward.com.
The other finalists are Devin Bush, Michigan; Tre Lamar, Clemson; Dylan Moses, Alabama; Devin White, LSU.
The Butkus Award® is presented by the Butkus Foundation, a non-profit 501c3 organization which advances health and wellness through special initiatives. This includes the I Play Clean® program which encourages athletes to play using their natural ability and avoid the use of illegal performance-enhancing drugs. Each candidate named has provided a written confirmation that they play clean.
The Butkus Award is part of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which includes 23 awards honoring 800 individuals since 1935.