July 14, 2014
Rice defensive tackle Christian Covington has been named to the 2014 Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List, the fourth such preseason listing for the junior from Vancouver, British Columbia. Covington has also been named to the 2014 Bronko Nagurski, Outland Trophy and Chuck Bednarik Award lists.
Covington is one of 123 athletes from 76 universities who were placed on the initial Rotary Lombardi Award list by the selection committee.
"This is one of our favorite times of the year," Rotary Lombardi Award committee chair Brian Carr said. "The dog days of summer are when people start thinking about college football again. We are ready to see who is going to distinguish themselves this year, and we look forward to tracking the progress of each player on this list."
Covington was a first-team All C-USA pick by league coaches as a sophomore, leading the team with a career-high 14 tackles for loss while finishing with a career-best 59 tackles. He played the last five games of the year playing with a heavy cast on his right hand due to thumb injury, but still recorded 4.5 of his tackles for loss, including a pair in the Liberty Bowl. He posted his top two totals for unassisted tackles after his injury (6 each vs. UAB and Mississippi State). He was also directly responsible for the Owls first two defensive touchdowns in 2013, partially deflecting pass that Michael Kutzler ran back for a TD vs. Kansas and blocking a field goal vs. Houston that Alex Lyons returned for a score. He was also named to Dave Campbell's Texas Football's All-Texas postseason team.
Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to down linemen, end-to-end, either on offense or defense, who set up no farther than 10 yards to the left or right of the ball, or linebackers who set up no farther than five yards deep from the line of scrimmage. The candidates earned a place on the preliminary watch list by earning All-American honors, being named to their respective all-conference teams or receiving 2014 pre-season honors. The Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List will be updated prior to the start of the 2014 season in order to identify other players who have received significant pre-season honors.
While the Watch List highlights those players who have already received national recognition, any Division 1 player who meets the requirements is eligible for consideration from the Rotary Lombardi Selection Committee. This committee is comprised of more than 300 members, including all past winners and finalists, all Division 1 head coaches and a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters.
The Rotary Lombardi Watch List, intended as a reference tool for the Selection Committee, will be periodically updated and revised through the conclusion of the voting to determine the 12 Semifinalists for 2014.
The 45th Rotary Lombardi Award will be held on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 at the Bayou Music Center in Houston, Texas. For more information, visit www.rotarylombardiaward.org.
Rice will open training camp for the 2014 season on August 4 and open the 2014 season on August 30 at Notre Dame.