Three Huskies Honored

Connecticut linebacker Sio Moore, defensive end Trevardo Williams, and tight end Ryan Griffin were named to the 43rd Annual Rotary Lombardi Award watch list Monday. The Lombardi Award, given to the nation's top college lineman or linebacker, is one of the most prestigious awards in college football.

Here's the release from The Rotary Club of Houston:

HOUSTON – The Rotary Club of Houston on Monday announced the 43rd Annual Rotary Lombardi Award watch list. The Rotary Lombardi Award is given to the nation's top college lineman or linebacker each year.

A year ago, Griffin was named a Second Team All-BIG EAST selection. He was Connecticut's third leading receiver with 33 receptions, three for touchdowns, and 499 yards. Griffin was one of 25 tight ends named to the John Mackey award midseason watch list in 2011. Over his three year career, Griffin has 87 catches in 36 games for 1,016 receiving yards. Last week, Griffin was also named to the Mackey Award Watch List for the nation's top tight end.

Moore has started 21 games in a Husky uniform, including all 12 in 2011. He finished third on the squad in tackles with 86, led the team with 16 tackles for a loss and was second with 6.5 sacks. Twice in 2010, Moore was named the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week. He made a career-high 17 tackles in an overtime win over West Virginia on October 20, 2010. On Monday, Moore was revealed to be a candidate on the Butkus Award Watch List, honoring the best linebacker in the nation.

Williams was honored as a Second Team All-BIG EAST selection as a junior after leading Connecticut with 12.2 sacks and was second in tackles for loss with 15.0. He totaled 43 tackles on the season, 20 of which came in the final five games of the season. Williams ranked second in the country and first in the BIG EAST 1.04 sacks per game. His 19 career sacks currently rank sixth all-time at UConn. Earlier this off-season, Williams was selected for both the Bednarik and Nagurski Award Watch Lists.

The first round of voting by the selection committee will determine the Top 25 Quarter Finalists, while the fourth and final selection will reveal the winner on December 5, 2012.

Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to:

• Offensive or defensive end-to-end down linemen who set up no farther than 10 yards to the left or right of the ball

• 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 NCAA.

The candidates earned a place on the 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

• 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 25 quarterfinalists for 2012. The second round of voting will determine the seven 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 Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012 at The Hobby Center in Houston, Texas.

Last year's 2011 Rotary Lombardi Award winner, Luke Kuechly, was drafted by the Carolina Panthers with the ninth overall pick of the 2012 NFL Draft.

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