Cal football linebacker Jordan Kunaszyk named to Butkus Award watchlist

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Lianne Frick/Senior Staff

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If redshirt senior inside linebacker Jordan Kunaszyk has another season like his 2017 campaign, he might need to build a larger trophy case. 

Kunaszyk has been named to the preseason watchlist for the Butkus Award, given out to the best linebacker in college football. This comes on top of being on the preseason watchlist for the Lott IMPACT Trophy — given out to the college defensive player who best represents the acronym of integrity, maturity, performance, academics, community and tenacity — as well as being named third-team preseason All Pac-12.

Kunaszyk led the Bears for the 2017 season with a career-high 74 tackles despite only playing in nine contests. Kunaszyk also tallied 6.0 tackles for a loss, 3.5 sacks and two interceptions.

In last year’s Washington State game — when the Bears shut down the No. 8 team in the country — Kunaszyk had 2.5 sacks and won multiple national defensive player of the week awards.

Only four Pac-12 players have ever won the Butkus Award. On October 29, semifinalists will be announced, followed by finalists on November 19; the award will be presented at the College Football Awards show  on December 6.

Contact John Kalil at [email protected].