DURHAM, N.C. – Duke rising senior safety Matt Daniels has been named to the 2011 Lott IMPACT Trophy Watch List, announced this week by Ronnie Lott and the Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation. The annual award honors the top collegiate defensive player in the country.
Daniels, 6-1, 205-pound native of Fayetteville, Ga., has appeared in 34 career games for the Blue Devils with 25 starting assignments. He is a two-time Academic All-ACC selection and owns career totals of 198 tackles, 9.0 tackles for loss, 13 pass break-ups, six caused fumbles, three fumble recoveries and two interceptions.
Last year, Daniels carded 93 total stops and ranked sixth in the ACC in tackles per game (7.75) and tied for second in caused fumbles per game (0.25).
This is the eighth year that the IMPACT Foundation has recognized the student-athletes throughout the nation who have had the biggest IMPACT on their teams both on and off the field. IMPACT is an acronym for Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community and Tenacity, characteristics that Ronnie Lott exhibited throughout his brilliant Hall of Fame career at both USC and in the National Football League.
The 2011 list of 42 (Lott’s uniform number) includes 19 defensive backs, 14 linebackers and nine defensive linemen. There are 11 players from the ACC, eight from the SEC, seven from the Big Ten, six from the Pac-10, six from the Big 12, one from the Big East, one from the Mountain West, one from the Western Athletic Conference and one from Notre Dame.
Eleven of the nominees received All-American honors a year ago and 10 were accorded academic honors in their respective conferences.
The Lott Trophy has now donated nearly $850,000 to charities since its inception in 2004, including $275,000 to 23 different universities. The winners’ school receives $25,000 annually, each of the three runner-ups $5,000 and the Lott IMPACT Player of the Week $1,000.
A national voter panel, made up of more than 200 former collegiate stars, former college coaches, members of the media and both the Lott IMPACT Board of Directors and Board of Advisors, will select the four finalists who will be honored at the annual Lott IMPACT Trophy banquet Dec. 11 in Newport Beach.