Oct. 29, 2008
BERKELEY - Cal senior linebacker Zack Follett, who leads the Golden Bears with 8.5 tackles for loss and four quarterback sacks this fall, is one of 20 defensive players to earn a spot on the Lott Trophy quarterfinalist list.
Follett was named the Lott Trophy IMPACT Player of the Week presented by Wachovia Sept. 6 earlier this year. For the season, he has 38 tackles, 8.5 tackles for losses, four sacks, two forced fumble and a fumble recovery.
Named after Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott, The Lott Trophy is awarded to college football's Defensive IMPACT Player of the Year. Now in its fifth year, The Lott Trophy is the only college football award to equally recognize athletic performance and the personal character attributes of the player.
"This is another impressive list of candidates," said Bob Cristiano, the president of the IMPACT Foundation, the sponsor of the award. "They represent the best in college football and a great cross-section of our country. It will be difficult to single out just one of these outstanding student-athletes."
Seven conferences are represented on the list of 20 quarterfinalists, with the Southeastern Conference leading the way with five candidates. Ohio State (James Laurinaitis, Malcolm Jenkins) is the only school with two quarterfinalists. There are nine linebackers on the list, seven defensive linemen and four defensive backs. While there are 10 seniors on the list, there are also nine juniors (and one sophomore, Eric Berry), the most underclassmen to make the quarter-finalist Lott Trophy Watch List.
Sponsored by The Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation, the Lott award is given to a player who exhibits the same characteristics Lott embodied during his distinguished career: integrity, maturity, performance, academics, community and tenacity.
David Pollack of Georgia, DeMeco Ryans of Alabama, Daymeion Hughes of Cal and Glenn Dorsey of LSU were the winners of the first four Lott Trophies. Georgia, Alabama, Cal and LSU each received $25,000 for their general scholarship funds. In four years, the Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation has donated $450,000 to various charities, in addition to the universities.
Voters for the award include selected members of the national media, previous finalists, the Board of Directors of the Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation and Legends Coaches, a distinguished group of former head college coaches. The watch list will be trimmed to eight semifinalists on Nov. 11 and the four finalists, who will all be flown into California for the banquet, will be announced Nov. 26.
The winner will be announced at a banquet at The Pacific Club in Newport Beach Dec. 14.
Lott Trophy Quarterfinalists
Asher Allen, Jr., DB, Georgia
Eric Berry, So., DB, Tennessee
Aaron Curry, Sr., LB, Wake Forest
Brian Cushing, Sr., LB, USC
Zack Follett, Sr., LB, California
Mark Herzlich, Jr., LB, Boston College
George Hypolite, Sr., DT, Colorado
Jeremy Jarmon, Jr., DL, Kentucky
Malcolm Jenkins, Sr., DB, Ohio State
Jan Jorgensen, Jr., DE, BYU
James Laurinaitis, Sr., LB, Ohio State
Scott McKillop, Sr., LB, Pitt
Brit Miller, Sr., LB, Illinois
Eric Norwood, Jr., LB, South Carolina
Brian Orakpo, Sr., DE, Texas
Nick Reed, Sr., DE, Oregon
Myron Rolle, Jr., S, Florida State
George Selvie, Jr., DE, South Florida
Brandon Spikes, Jr., LB, Florida
Sean Weatherspoon, Jr., LB, Missouri
For more information on the Lott Trophy, visit thelotttrophy.com.