Pugh, Taylor Cited For Play
Seniors make updated Lombardi "watch list"
August 24, 2001

BLACKSBURG - In conjunction with the kickoff of the 2001 season of college football, the Executive Committee of the 2001 Rotary Lombardi Award has released an updated version of its Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List, containing the names of 81 of the top linemen and linebackers in the country, including Virginia Tech's David Pugh and Ben Taylor.

The initial list of 52 preliminary candidates was released in May and was based on players who had received on-field recognition during the 2000 season. The additions to the list include players who have been cited as preseason honors candidates and who had not previously been included on the List

Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to down linemen and those defenders who line up within five yards of the football.

While the "watch list" highlights players who have already received national recognition, any Division I player who meets the position requirements is eligible for consideration from the Rotary Lombardi Selection Committee. The committee is comprised of nearly 300 members, including all Division I head coaches, former winners, sportswriters and broadcasters. The Rotary Lombardi Watch List, intended as a reference tool for the Selection Committee, will be periodically updated and revised through the conclusion of the voting to determine the 12 Semifinalists for the 2001.

"The Executive Committee of the Rotary Lombardi Award is proud to be an active participant in the 2001 college football season by identifying and honoring through its Watch List some of the most outstanding athletes in college football," stated Marc K. Rieke, Chairman of the Executive Committee. "Our ultimate goal is to identify and honor the outstanding college lineman that best exemplifies the traditions of discipline and excellence for which Vince Lombardi was renowned."

Now in its 32nd year of honoring the top lineman in Division I football, the Rotary Lombardi Award Dinner has raised over $2.5 million for The American Cancer Society since it was first held in 1970.

Pugh, from Madison Heights, Va., is a redshirt senior who was a first-team All-BIG EAST pick last year on the defensive line. He recorded 57 tackles, seven tackles for loss, five sacks and an interception. Taylor, who was named to the Butkus "watch list" on Thursday, led the Hokies with 103 tackles last year. The senior from Bellaire, Ohio, was a third-team All-America pick as well as a first-team All-BIG EAST selection.