The Butkus Award watch list was released Monday morning, and all four of Michigan’s committed linebackers in the 2021 class — four-stars Junior Colson and Jaydon Hood, and three-stars Tyler McLaurin and Casey Phinney — made it on the list.
There are 50 linebackers on the watch list, so Michigan’s commits account for a solid eight percent of the list. LSU also has four linebacker commits on the list, while North Carolina has three. Schools with two commits on the list include Alabama, Texas, Clemson, Georgia and Tennessee. There are 16 uncommitted players who made the list.
Phinney was the first linebacker to commit to the class, back on April 3. He stands 6-foot-1, weighs 225 pounds and hails from Marshfield, Massachusetts. He plays his high school football at Noble And Greenough School, the same school four-star offensive line target Drew Kendall goes to. He has other offers from Ivy League schools, as well as Georgetown. It will be interested to see where Phinney winds up, but he could probably play a few different roles in Michigan’s defense.
The rest of the linebackers committed back in May. The first domino to fall was McLaurin, a 6-foot-2, 210-pounder from Bolingbrook, Illinois. He committed to Michigan on May 9 over other offers from Texas Tech, Michigan State, Illinois, Nebraska, Purdue and others. He is likely suited to play outside linebacker at U-M.
Next up was Colson, who is one of Michigan’s best players in the class. A 6-foot-2- 228-pounder from Brentwood, Tennessee, Colson has told Maize n Brew he expects to compete at the viper position when he steps foot on campus. He also has told us he aspires to be a freshman All-American. He committed to Michigan May 24 over schools like Tennessee, LSU, Auburn, Florida State, Oregon, Penn State and more.
“Very pumped about (being on the list),” Colson told Maize n Brew on Monday. “I’m coming in to win it.”
Finally, Hood committed to Michigan a day after Colson on May 25. Hood, who is 6-foot-1 and 212 pounds from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is Michigan’s inside linebacker for the class. He gave his verbal pledge to Michigan over schools like Alabama, LSU, Penn State, Minnesota, Miami (FL) and more.
Needless to say, this is a loaded group of linebackers Michigan is bringing in for the 2021 class. All of these guys have potential to bring a lot to the defense when their time comes. I am real excited to see how this all plays out for them, and I would not be shocked to see one of these guys win the high school Butkus Award this year.