Three Named to Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List

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  1. G Morg

    G Morg Walk On

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    Western Kentucky University senior offensive lineman Adam Smith and junior linebacker Andrew Jackson along with FIU FIU senior linebacker Winston Fraser have been named to the 2012 Preseason Watch List for the Rotary Lombardi Award, given to the nation's top college lineman or linebacker each year.
    For Jackson, this is the third watch list he has been named to over the past week. The Lakeland, Fla., native has also appeared on the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and Dick Butkus Award lists. A first-team all-Sun Belt Conference pick at linebacker in 2011 and a preseason all-league selection this season, Jackson posted a team-high 109 tackles last season. His 9.1 tackles per game ranked third in the league and 39th nationally, and he was also the SBC leader with 17 tackles for loss.
    Smith second-team all-Sun Belt honors in 2011 after starting all 12 games at right guard. The Murfreesboro, Tenn., product enters his senior season having started 33 games during his three-year career. He finished the year an overall grade of 80% for the season in 2011, being credited with 112 pancake or knockdown blocks in 12 games. He allowed just three sacks on the year, and was part of a unit that gave up just 1.83 sacks per game. Smith also helped WKU average a league-best 181.6 rushing yards per game last season.
    Fraser is the veteran leader of FIU's impressive linebacker trio enters the 2012 campaign with 31 career starts over his three previous seasons. Last year, he led the Panthers with 108 tackles in 2011, good for sixth in the Sun Belt and 65th nationally. He has been twice recognized by the conference, earning second-team All-Sun Belt in 2011 and an Honorable Mention selection in 2010.
    Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to: 1) offensive or defensive end-to-end down linemen who set up no farther than 10 yards to the left or right of the ball and 2) linebackers who set up no farther than five yards deep from the line of scrimmage. All candidates must be eligible to play college sports under the rules and regulations of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
    The candidates earned a place on the Official Watch List by: earning All-American honors last season; being named last season to their respective all-conference first team as determined by the conference's head coaches; being projected to be an All-American or first team all-conference player for the coming season; or by nomination approved by the nominations committee.
    While the Watch List highlights those players who have already received national recognition, any Division IA player who meets the above requirements is eligible for consideration from the Rotary Lombardi Award Selection Committee. The committee is comprised of more than 500 members, including all past winners and finalists, all Division IA head coaches, and a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters.
    The Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List is a reference tool for the Selection Committee. It will be periodically revised until the first round of voting is completed. The first round of voting determines the Top 25 Quarter finalists for 2012. The second round of voting will determine the final 7 semi-finalists or "Seven Blocks of Granite". The third round of voting will determine the "four- finalists from the "Seven Blocks of Granite". The fourth and final round of voting will determine the winner of The 43rd Rotary Lombardi Award which will be announced on national television live in "prime-time" 8-9 PM (CST) Wednesday, December 5, 2012 at The Hobby Center in Houston, TX (network to be determined).
     
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