The senior is one of five finalists for the national linebacker of the year 

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama senior linebacker Reuben Foster was selected as one of five finalists for the 2016 Butkus Award, the Dick Butkus Foundation announced on Monday morning. The Butkus Award is presented annually to the nation’s top linebacker.

The signal-caller of the Crimson Tide linebacking corps, Foster has put together an impressive senior campaign, helping to lead one of the nation’s top-ranked defenses. He has collected a team-high 75 tackles while adding 9.0 tackles for loss (-39 yards) and two sacks (-18 yards). The Auburn, Ala., native has totaled three quarterback hurries and a pair of pass breakups for the season.

Foster is joined on the list by Kendall Beckwith (LSU), Zach Cunningham (Vanderbilt), Jarrad Davis (Florida) and Josey Jewell (Iowa). This year’s winner will be selected by an independent panel of recruiters, scouts, coaches and journalists and will be officially announced on or by Dec. 6.

The award recognizes linebackers at three levels of competition while helping spread the word about Butkus’ ‘I Play Clean’ initiative which encourages teens to eat well, train hard, and play with attitude instead of resorting to steroids and performance-enhancing drugs.

Alabama has had three players previously win the Butkus Award, including Derrick Thomas (1988), Rolando McClain (2009) and C.J. Mosley (2013). Last season, Reggie Ragland was named as a finalist for the Crimson Tide.