2016 Butkus Award watch list

Alabama linebackers Ryan Anderson, Tim Williams and Reuben Foster were named to the Butkus Award watch list on Tuesday, the most of any school.

The Butkus Award is presented annually to college football's top linebacker. Named for Pro Football Hall of Famer Dick Butkus of the Chicago Bears, the award is chosen by a panel of 51 voters, and 51 players were selected to the watch list, matching Butkus' pro jersey number.

Williams and Anderson are two of college football's top pass rushers at outside linebacker, while Foster will anchor Alabama's run defense at inside linebacker. Other top linebackers named to the watch list include Ohio State's Raekwon McMillan, who is the lone returning Butkus Award finalist from last year, Florida's Jarrad Davis, Texas' Malik Jefferson and Louisville's Devonte' Fields.

First Look:
NFL Media analyst and former NFL scout Daniel Jeremiah takes a "first look" at college football's top players for 2016.

Dallas Cowboys second-round draft pick Jaylon Smith of Notre Dame won the Butkus Award last year. The most recent Butkus winner to be picked in the first round was Alabama's C.J. Mosley, who won the award in 2013.

Butkus Award semifinalists will be announced Oct. 31, finalists on Nov. 21, and the winner will be named Dec. 6.

Watch lists for other awards will be released this month as follows:

July 5: Bednarik Award / Maxwell Award
July 6: Mackey Award / Rimington Trophy
July 7: Lou Groza Award / Ray Guy Award
July 8: Bronko Nagurski Trophy / Outland Trophy
July 11: Jim Thorpe Award
July 12: Butkus Award
July 13: Biletnikoff Award / Wuerffel Trophy
July 14: Davey O'Brien Award / Doak Walker Award
July 15: Walter Camp Award / Paul Hornung Award

2016 Butkus Award watch list

16 for '16:
CFB 24/7 counts down the best of what college football has to offer in varying categories for 2016.

Ryan Anderson, Alabama
Kendall Beckwith, LSU
Vince Biegel, Wisconsin
Dante Booker, Ohio State
Ben Boulware, Clemson
Tyus Bowser, Houston
Richie Brown, Mississippi State
Riley Bullough, Michigan State
Jason Cabinda, Penn State
Jeff Camilli, Fresno State
Lorenzo Carter, Georgia
Jermaine Carter, Maryland
Zach Cunningham, Vanderbilt
Kevin Davis, Colorado State
Jarrad Davis, Florida
Nick DeLuca, North Dakota State
Brooks Ellis, Arkansas
Jordan Evans, Oklahoma
Devonte' Fields, Louisville
Salamo Fiso, Arizona State
Reuben Foster, Alabama
T.J. Holloman, South Carolina
Travin Howard, TCU
Shane Huber, Massachusetts
Malik Jefferson, Texas
Josey Jewell, Iowa
Peter Kalambayi, Stanford
Harvey Kangi, BYU
Keith Kelsey, Louisville
Micah Kiser, Virginia
Elijah Lee, Kansas State
Raekwon McMillan, Ohio State
Matt Milano, Boston College
Charmeachealle Moore, Kansas State
Nyles Morgan, Notre Dame
Calvin Munson, San Diego State
Hardy Nickerson, Illinois
Jalen Reeves-Maybin, Tennessee
T.J. Ricks, Old Dominion
Auggie Sanchez, South Florida
Michael Scherer, Missouri
Cameron Smith, USC
Steven Taylor, Houston
Austin Valdez, Bowling Green
Tanner Vallejo, Boise State
Azeem Victor, Washington
Anthony Walker, Northwestern
Nyeem Warman-White, Penn State
Tim Williams, Alabama
Eric Wilson, Cincinnati
Taylor Young, Baylor

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.