DALLAS (FWAA) – Michigan's David Baas, Florida State's
Alex Barron and Oklahoma's Jammal Brown are the finalists
for the 2004 Outland Trophy, which is awarded to the best interior
lineman in college football.
The Football Writers Association of America has annually selected
the winner of the prestigious award since 1946. It is the third-oldest award
in major college football behind the Heisman Trophy and Maxwell Award.
Baas, a 6-5, 323-pound, fifth-year senior, started the 2004 season at
guard, but moved to center in a victory over Iowa in late September and
made his first start at the position at that time. Baas' position switch
settled the offensive line and paved the way for Michigan to win a share
of the Big Ten title.
Barron, a 6-6, 308-pound senior, anchors the Seminoles' offensive line.
He is generally considered the top National Football League line prospect
for the 2005 draft. He has not graded below 87 percent in a game this season
and is the main blocker for the Seminoles' rushing game. which features
two players who have gained more than five yards per carry.
The Sooners' Brown, a 6-6, 312-pound senior offensive tackle, has had
the duties this season of protecting or opening holes for two Heisman Trophy
candidates, freshman running back Adrian Peterson and senior quarterback
Jason White. Brown has not allowed a sack, hurry or quarterback hit all
Florida State has had two Outland finalists and Michigan one since 1987,
when three finalists were first named. Oklahoma has never had a finalist,
other than its four previous winners. Neither Michigan nor Florida State,
despite their storied pasts in college football, has had an Outland Trophy
Oklahoma has had four Outland Trophy winners – the most recent one was
Greg Roberts in 1978. Other Oklahoma Outland Trophy winners are Lee Roy
Selmon (1975), J.D. Roberts (1953) and Jim Weatherall (1951).
Nebraska leads all schools with seven different Outland Trophy winners,
including the only two-time winner, center Dave Rimington (1981 and 1982).
Last year's winner, Iowa offensive tackle Robert Gallery, was picked
second overall in the 2004 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders.
The Outland Trophy winner will be announced on Dec. 9 at the ESPN College
Football Awards Show from Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. The official
award presentation will be Jan. 13 in Omaha, Neb., at a banquet sponsored
by the Omaha Sports Committee and First Data.
At the presentation banquet in January, former Army lineman Joe Steffy,
the second Outland Trophy winner in 1947, is expected to receive his trophy.
The FWAA presented plaques to the winners before 1989, although a succession
of former winners such as Steffy have received their trophies in recent
The Outland Trophy is named after the late John Outland, a lineman at
the University of Pennsylvania at the turn of the century. Outland garnered
consensus All-America honors in 1898 at tackle and at back in 1899. Dr.
Outland was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2001.
Next month, the Cingular/ABC Sports All-America Team, which is selected
by the FWAA, will be announced on Dec. 11 at 2 p.m. EST in a one-hour special
televised by ABC. Also, the FWAA will present the Bronko Nagurski Trophy
to the nation's top defensive player, the Eddie Robinson Award to the national
coach of the year, and the Grantland Rice Trophy to the national champion
as selected by the pollsters of the Grantland Rice Super 16 Poll.
For more information about the FWAA and its awards, go to the association's
official website, www.footballwriters.com.
• Outland Trophy
official site (www.outlandtrophy.com)
Previous Outland Trophy Winners
Charleston Daily Mail
Arizona Daily Star
Reno Gazette Journal