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Jordan Kunaszyk On Butkus Award® Watch List

Posted July 23, 2018 by in

CHICAGO – Cal senior inside linebacker Jordan Kunaszyk was named Monday to the preseason watch list for the 2018 Butkus Award®. The honor is given annually to the nation’s outstanding collegiate and high school linebackers.

Semifinalists will be named October 29 and finalists November 19 with winners to be notified on or before December 4. The award will be presented at The Home Depot College Football Awards show to be televised live December 6 on ESPNU.

For more information visit or 51.butkus on Facebook. The hashtag for the award is #bukusaward2018.

Kunaszyk, who is also on the watch list for the Lott IMPACT Trophy, is one of six Cal players to have earned spots on preseason watch lists or be recognized as candidates for national awards in 2018 with the others senior tight end Ray Hudson (John Mackey Award Watch List), senior running back Patrick Laird (Maxwell Award Watch List, Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® Nominee, Doak Walker Award Watch List), junior wide receiver Kanawai Noa (Biletnikoff Award), senior center Addison Ooms (Rimington Trophy) and senior wide receiver Vic Wharton III (Biletnikoff Award).

Below are notes on Kunaszyk with an extended bio available by clicking on his name.

Jordan Kunaszyk, ILB, 6-3, 235, Sr., 2L, Sacramento, CA (American River College/Roseville HS)
Pronunciation: kuh-NAW-shick
• Played in nine games with five starts and led Cal with a career-high 74 tackles as a 2017 junior while adding 6.0 tackles for loss (-41 yards), 3.5 sacks (-37 yards), one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, two interceptions that he returned for a team-high 53 yards and one quarterback hurry
• Had a huge game as a junior in a win over No. 8 Washington State when he recorded 11 tackles as well as career highs of 2.5 sacks and tackles for loss (31 tackle for loss and sack yards), his lone career forced fumble, an interception and a quarterback hurry to become the first Cal player to earn Walter Camp Defensive Player of the Week recognition among a host of honors
• Played in all 12 games off the bench in his first season at Cal as a 2016 sophomore and contributed 51 tackles
• Produced one of the biggest moments in Cal football history when he batted Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert’s pass into the air and eventually came up with the interception at the Cal 10-yard line on the game’s final play to seal a 52-49 double overtime victory over the Ducks
• Has played in 21 career games with six starts in two seasons at Cal after transferring following his 2015 freshman campaign at American River College, contributing 125 tackles, 7.0 tackles for loss (-42 yards), 3.5 sacks (-37 yards), three interceptions that he has returned for 60 yards, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and one quarterback hurry

The Butkus Award® is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. The members of the NCFAA are unveiling preseason watch lists for 17 of their 24 awards over a 12-day period from July 16-27. Following is the entire 2018 preseason watch list calendar.

About the Author

Alforde Joaquin

ALF’s passion for shooting and editing has earned him several awards including an Edward R. Murrow Award for videography. He recently received two first place awards from the San Francisco Bay Area Press Photographers Association in the Digital Media Sports Feature and Sports Videography categories. A 6-time Emmy recipient in five different categories: Director/Producer, Videography, Editing, Feature Segment and Sound Mixing, Alf has produced over 3,000+ video segments including several award winning documentaries and features.