Top Defender for Texas A&M Football Inexplicably Left off Award Semifinalists
Edgerrin Cooper has been having one of the best seasons by any linebacker in the country, by any available metric. He leads all linebackers in sacks (depending on how you count Alabama’s Dallas Turner, you might say he’s tied), is second among linebackers in TFLs, has the highest PFF grade in the nation for linebackers (for all the issues I have with PFF grades when it comes to OL, it’s easier to grade how well a player covers, rushes the passer, and tackles), and was named to several midseason all-American lists.
It is nigh inexplicable, then, that Cooper was not even named a semifinalist for the Butkus award, given out each year to the nation’s best linebacker.
Listen, Coop doesn’t have to win this award. He doesn’t need to bring home the hardware to count this as a successful season—his meteoric rise up NFL draft boards has testified to that. But to not even name him as a finalist? That’s borderline criminal. I seriously wonder about what criteria the decision-makers here could possibly be using that would exclude him from this list. Whatever they are, they’re even poorer than the formatting in this screenshot. Don’t give up on the bullet points after the first guy on the list! Why would you do that?
Anyway, Texas A&M football fans on Twitter had plenty to say about this decision.
According to mattywatty on Twitter, no P5 linebacker even has 14 TFLs on the season. Coop has 16, and apparently can’t qualify for this list. This is the final straw. I’m declaring it right now: I will not be watching the Butkus award ceremony this year! This is harsh, but I must do what I must do to protest the lack of integrity from the awarding committee. If anyone reading can forward this to them, that would be great.