Double Butkus

A big congratulations is due to Manti Te’o who started out his long week on the awards circuit by winning the Butkus Award, which is given to the country’s top linebacker. Manti’s week, during which he is sure to keep piling up hardware (do they FedEx these things home or is he checking them in his suitcase?) will now officially end at the Heisman Trophy presentation in New York as Te’o was announced as one of three finalists alongside Texas A&M’s Johnny “Scooby Doo” Manziel and Kansas State’s Collin Klein.

You may also recall that 4 years ago Te’o won the inaugural high school Butkus award. Well, fast forward to today and while Manti was being awarded the collegiate version Notre Dame commit Jaylon Smith became the 5th winner of the high school Butkus Award. Yup, these are good times in South Bend.

To give you a better idea of what kind of company Te’o is in with this award, just look at the previous winners:

Year Winner
2011 Luke Kuechly
2010 Von Miller
2009 Rolando McClain
2008 Aaron Curry
2007 James Laurinaitis
2006 Patrick Willis
2005 Paul Posluszny
2004 Derrick Johnson

While early indications from “Stiff Arm Trophy” (a website that collects voting information from Heisman voters that publicly release their top 3) show Te’o firmly implanted in second place, we can still hold out hope that the most deserving player — representing the best defense and the best team in the country — brings home Heisman #8 for Notre Dame.

If you haven’t seen it yet, make sure to watch Manti’s Heisman music video below by Pat McKillen, a Notre Dame graduate and friend of Her Loyal Sons. Also check out his ND themed original “Loyal Sons” by clicking here, and find some of his excellent non-ND music at

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