Texas Longhorns senior defensive end Jackson Jeffcoat and senior offensive guard Mason Walters have been named to the 2013 Lombardi Award watch list, the Rotary Lombardi Award Committee announced Monday.
The Lombardi is awarded each year to the nation's college lineman or linebacker of the year. Jeffcoat and Walters are appearing on the preseason list for the second-straight year.
Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to down linemen, end-to-end, either on offense or defense, who set up no farther than 10 yards to the left or right of the ball, and linebackers who set up no farther than 5 yards deep from the line of scrimmage.
Texas boasts three prior winners of the Lombardi Trophy with the most recent being DE Brian Orakpo in 2008. DLTony DeGrate took home the trophy in 1984 and DL Kenneth Sims was the 1981 recipient. UT also has had four other finalists for the Lombardi; OL Justin Blalock (2006), DT Rodrique Wright (2005), LB Derrick Johnson (2004) and DE Cory Redding (2002), and two other semifinalists - OT Leonard Davis (2000) and DT Casey Hampton(2000).
Jeffcoat is a fourth-year defensive lineman who has appeared in 27 games with 20 starts, and has posted at least one sack in 10 of his last 13 games with 12 over that span. He was sidelined for the final seven games of 2012 after suffering a right pectoral muscle rupture vs. Oklahoma.
For his career, Jeffcoat has made 117 tackles (59 solo), 14.5 sacks, 38 TFL, 22 quarterback hurries, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and five pass break ups. He was named to the 2012 Nagurski Trophy, Bednarik Award, Lombardi Award and CFPA Defensive Lineman of the Year Trophy watch lists. He was named a 2011 second team All-Big 12 selection (Coaches, AP, Kansas City Star, San Antonio Express-News, Fort Worth Star-Telegram) and was tabbed honorable mention Big 12 Defensive Freshman of the Year in 2010.
Jeffcoat's father, Jim, was a standout defensive lineman for the Dallas Cowboys (1983-94) and Buffalo Bills (1995-97) and is the current assistant coach/defensive line coach at The University of Colorado.
Walters is a fifth-year offensive lineman who has started the last 38 games (longest streak in the Big 12) at right guard and has played in 39 career contests. He was a 2012 honorable mention All-Big 12 selection and was named to the 2012 Outland Trophy and Lombardi Award watch lists. Walters was named 2011 second-team All-Big 12 (San Antonio Express-News) and honorable mention (Coaches).
Walters is also on the 2013 Outland Trophy watch list.
The candidates earned a place on the Lombardi preliminary watch list by earning All-America honors, being named to their respective all-conference teams or receiving 2013 preseason honors. The Rotary Lombardi Award watch list will be updated prior to the start of the 2013 season in order to identify other players who have received significant preseason honors.
While the watch list highlights those players who have already received national recognition, any Division 1 player who meets the requirements is eligible for consideration from the Rotary Lombardi Selection Committee. This committee is comprised of more than 500 members, including all past winners and finalists, all Division I head coaches and a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters.
The Rotary Lombardi watch list, intended as a reference tool for the selection committee, will be periodically updated and revised through the conclusion of the voting to determine the 12 semifinalists.
The 44th Rotary Lombardi Award banquet will be held on Dec. 11, 2013 at the Wortham Center in Houston, Texas.
Source: Texas Sports