The Rotary Lombardi Award is awarded annually to the nation’s best (offensive or defensive) lineman or linebacker. Previous winners include Nick Fairley, LaMarr Woodley, Orlando Pace and Penn State’s own Bruce Clark.
A Nittany Lion will not win it in 2012. Or even have a chance to.
The quarter-finalists for the Lombardi Award were announced today and Penn State linebacker Michael Mauti was left off the list.
Four players in the Big Ten did make the list, however. Michigan State’s William Gholston (DE), Ohio State’s Johnathan Hankins (DT), Purdue’s Kawann Short (DT) and Wisconsin’s Chris Borland (LB) are all on the list of 25. However, none of them have been named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week twice like Mauti has. None of them have been named Walter Camp Defensive Player of the Week like Mauti has.
Michael Mauti is not only a nationally recognized player, he is the un-contested leader of arguably the best defense in the conference and this Penn State team as a whole.
The Rotary Club of Houston says that the winner should be someone who shows “leadership, courage, desire, respect for authority and discipline.” I think they missed a chance to include someone who exudes those qualities in Mauti.
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