Vol trio named to Outland Trophy watch list

DALLAS (FWAA) – Seniors Ja’Wuan James and Daniel McCullers and junior Antonio Richardson were all named to the 2013 Outland Trophy Watch List announced Thursday by the Football Writers Association of America.

The Outland Trophy, selected by the FWAA, acknowledges the best interior lineman in college football.

Tennessee is the only school in the nation to have two offensive tackles named to the watch list with James and Richardson earning the honor.

UT is also one of just four schools with three players named to the list and just one of nine schools to feature both an offensive and defensive player.

This marks the third straight season that a Vol has been named to the Outland Trophy Watch List as Dallas Thomas earned the honor last season and Malik Jackson was named in 2011.

On the offensive line, James and Richardson helped pave the way for a Vol offense that averaged 477.6 yards per game and allowed just seven sacks, the second fewest in the NCAA.

The duo has accumulated a plethora of preseason honors including the ranking of the No. 2 overall offensive line in the nation and best in the SEC from Lindy’s and Athlon Sports.

In his first season at Rocky Top, McCullers made an instant impact on the Tennessee defensive line, starting seven games and accumulating 39 tackles, including 5.5 for negative yardage.

The Outland Trophy presentation banquet, sponsored by the Greater Omaha Sports Committee, will be held on Jan. 9, 2014 in Omaha, Neb. This year, North Carolina State center Jim Ritcher, the 1979 Outland Trophy winner, will be honored and presented an Outland Trophy, which was not given in the era in which he won the award.

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