Houston, TX – Baylor junior offensive lineman Cyril Richardson has been named to the preseason watch list for the 43rd annual Rotary Lombardi Award, as announced by the Rotary Club of Houston on Monday.
The Rotary Lombardi Award is given annually to the nation's top college lineman or linebacker. Eligibility for the award is limited to offensive or defensive end-to-end down lineman who set up no farther than 10 yards to the left of right of the ball and linebackers who set up no farther than five years deep from the line of scrimmage.
The watch list will be narrowed to 25 quarterfinalists chosen by the award's selection committee, and a second round of voting will determine the final seven semifinalists or "Seven Blocks of Granite." The third round of voting will trim the list to four finalists, and a fourth round will determine the winner, which will be announced on national television on Dec. 5 at The Hobby Center in Houston.
Richardson was previously named to the watch list for the Outland Trophy, given each year to the nation's best interior lineman in college football.
A Fort Worth, Texas, native, Richardson is entering his fourth year with the Baylor program. He earned honorable mention All-Big 12 honors after starting all 13 games at left tackle in 2011, but he moved back to guard in the spring and is expected to start the season as the Bears' left guard.
Richardson was one of nine players to start all 13 games in 2011. He ranked third on the team with 70 total knockdowns, averaged an 80.6 percent coaches' grade for the year and graded 81 percent or higher in 10 of 13 games. His highest grade for the season came when he recorded a season-high eight knockdowns and earned an 88 percent coaches' grade against Rice.
Richardson guarded the quarterback's blind side for an offensive line that ranked second nationally in total offense, fourth in passing offense and 10th in rushing offense.
As a redshirt freshman in 2010, Richardson played in 12 of 13 games and made four starts at guard. He was named to the ESPN.com Big 12 All-Freshman team and earned fifth-team Postseason All-Freshman honors from Phil Steele.
The Rotary Lombardi Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA). The NCFAA was founded in 1997 as a coalition of the major collegiate football awards to protect, preserve and enhance the integrity, influence and prestige of the game's predominant awards.