Highsmith named to Butkus list

LSU linebacker Ali Highsmith had his name added to another national award watch list on Thursday as he is among 65 players named to the preliminary list for the Butkus Award, the Downtown Athletic Club of Orlando announced.

Highsmith, a junior from Miami, Fla., is also on the watch list for the Bednarik Award, which goes annually to the top defensive player in college football.

The Butkus Award, named in honor of the legendary Dick Butkus, is presented annually to the top linebacker in college football. Last year, Penn State's Paul Posluszny was the recipient of the Butkus Award.

Highsmith enters his second season as a starter for the Tigers in 2006. A year ago, Highsmith registered 75 tackles and 9.5 tackles for losses. His 75 tackles ranked second on the squad. He also accumulated four sacks and he returned a fumble 22-yards for a fourth quarter touchdown against Vanderbilt.

The Butkus Award Watch List will be trimmed to 10 semi-finalists on Thursday, October 19. That semi-finalist 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 9. The winner will be announced Saturday, December 9, 2006 at the Butkus Award Gala in Orlando.

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