Sports Out West

UCLA LB Anthony Barr earns Lott Award, eyes others

Photo Credit: Jonathan Moore / Getty Images

UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr has earned the Lott IMPACT Trophy in its 10th year of existence as the Bruins’ most influential defensive player. 

The award, which is named after NFL Hall of Famer and former USC Trojans linebacker Ronnie Lott is aimed at honoring an individual for his community involvement, leadership qualities and academic performance. Barr was a major catalyst for UCLA this season and put up stellar numbers, finishing with 20 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, five forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries to go along with 62 total tackles. 

As the first Bruin to win the award, Barr earned UCLA $25,000 for its general scholarship fund. In addition to Barr, Chris Borland of Wisconsin, USC’s Devin Kennard and James Morris of Iowa each were named as finalists. 

Current San Diego Chargers linebacker Manti Te’O won the award last season in a banner senior season for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

UCLA is preparing to appear in the Sun Bowl against Virginia Tech on Dec. 31, where Barr will finish his stellar collegiate career. Most remarkably, he only played two seasons at linebacker after coming in as a running back. He made waves quickly on defense, however, finishing with a Pac-12 leading 13.5 sacks in 2012. He’s sure to be in line for more awards before the season is over and could be one of the highest NFL draft picks in 2014. 

Photo Credit: Jonathan Moore | Getty Images 

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Michael C. Jones is the managing editor and founder of Sports Out West and a Southern California-based sports journalist. His work is also regularly featured on Yahoo! Sports and SB Nation. You can catch up with him on Twitter: @MikeJonesTweets.
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