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Akeem Ayers named a finalist for Butkus Award

UCLA redshirt junior outside linebacker Akeem Ayers was named a finalist for the Dick Butkus Award on Wednesday. The award is given annually to the nation’s top linebacker.

Ayers, who checks in at No. 12 overall in Mel Kiper Jr.'s latest NFL Draft Big Board, has recorded a team-best four sacks and is tied for the team lead in tackles for loss with 9 1/2. The other four finalists are Bruce Carter (North Carolina), Justin Houston (Georgia), Luke Kuechly (Boston College) and Von Miller (Texas A&M).

The winner will be announced between December 5-8.