Fresno State’s Allison, Hawaii’s Tavai Named to Butkus Award Watchlist
Jeffrey Allison and Jahlani Tavai represent the Mountain West’s best linebackers this preseason.
Can a MWC linebacker claim this defensive honor?
Watchlist season continues this morning with the unveiling of the Butkus Award watchlist. Given annually to the nation’s best linebacker, there are two names from the Mountain West on this year’s preseason list.
Jeffrey Allison anchored the middle of a rejuvenated Fresno State defense last fall and became one of the conference’s breakout stars in the process. He earned a first-team all-Mountain West spot by racking up 126 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, two sacks and two interceptions.
Hawaii’s Jahlani Tavai, meanwhile, had a typical 2017, his third as a starter with the Warriors, with 124 tackles, 11 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks.
Last year’s Butkus Award winner was former Georgia linebacker Roquan Smith.