Minter named Butkus finalist

Michael Bonnette
Kevin Minter makes a tough tackle in the Tigers' 41-35 win over Ole Miss on Saturday.

LSU linebacker Kevin Minter has been named one of five finalists for the Butkus Award, which is given each year to the top linebacker in college football.

Minter, a junior from Suwanee, Ga., is joined on the list of finalists by Jarvis Jones of Georgia, Dion Jordan of Oregon, C.J. Mosley of Alabama and Manti Te'o of Notre Dame.

In 11 games this year, Minter has recorded a team-high 101 tackles and been name the Southeastern Conference Defensive Player of the Week two times. In addition to his 101 tackles, Minter leads the Tigers with 13.5 tackles for loss to go along with 3.0 sacks, five pass-breakups, four quarterback hurries, one interception and one force fumble.

Minter had 20 tackles, including a school-record 17 solo stops, in a 14-6 loss to Florida as he earned his first SEC Player of the Week honor. The 20 tackles rank as the second highest total in school history and the most for an LSU player since 1988.

Minter earned three national defensive player of the week honors for his performance against Texas A&M when the Tigers limited Johnny Manziel, a front-runner for the Heisman Trophy, to just 27 rushing yards to go with three interceptions. Minter had 12 tackles, one sack, an interception, two quarterback hurries and a pass-breakup in the 24-19 win over the Aggies.

The finalists were selected by a panel of 51 coaches, scout and journalists with the winner of the 2012 award being announced in the first week of December.