The Horned Frogs are one of just 11 teams to have more than one candidate.
The Butkus Award is named in honor of Pro Football Hall of Fame linebacker Dick Butkus, who played collegiately at Illinois. Last year's recipient was Jim Laurinaitis of Ohio State.
A preseason All-American, Phillips has also been named the Preseason Mountain West Conference Defensive Player of the Year. Additionally, Dave Campbell's Texas Football tabbed Phillips as the State's Defensive Player of the Year for 2008. The Waller, Texas, native was named last season by Dave Campbell's as the top linebacker in Texas.
Phillips is a three-time All-Mountain West Conference selection. He has started all 38 games the last three seasons. Only four players nationally have a longer current streak for consecutive games started. Phillips' 231 career tackles, including a team-best 87 last year, top all active Frogs.
Phillips also appears on the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List which is awarded to the top defensive player in college football.
Henson has also been a three-time All-MWC selection. His 199 career tackles rank second among active Frogs behind only Phillips.
A Longview, Texas, native, Henson became the first TCU linebacker since 1995 (Lenoy Jones) to return an interception for a touchdown when he went 58 yards for a score in a win over SMU last season. He also had a pick with a 43-yard return in a victory over Baylor.