WILLIAMSBURG — Having established themselves as two of the nation’s top players, William & Mary All-America linebacker John Pius and All-America defensive end Nate Lynn were selected to the Buck Buchanan Award Watch List.
Presented by FedEx Ground, the Buchanan Award is given annually to the FCS national defensive player of the year.
W&M’s duo is among a group of the country’s top 35 players on the list, while the Tribe is one of just six schools with multiple players honored.
Pius, who was honored as an All-American by seven organizations last year, will help lead W&M’s talented defense after being voted as the runner up for the 2022 Buchanan Award. Additionally, he was selected as the 2022 CAA Defensive Player of the Year and the Virginia Defensive Player of the Year by VaSID. En route to garnering the accolades, Pius ranked fourth nationally in sacks (11.5) and fifth in TFL (19).
One of the country’s top defensive ends throughout his career, Lynn earned postseason All-America honors following each of the last two seasons and finished ninth in the final voting for the 2021 Buck Buchanan Award. Few, if any, players have matched Lynn’s productivity during the last two seasons, totaling 20 sacks, 26.5 TFL and 10 forced fumbles.
Ranked among the top 10 nationally in multiple preseason polls, W&M is coming off a historic 2022 campaign in which it equaled a school record with 11 victories, advanced to the NCAA Quarterfinals and won a share of the CAA title.
Led by 2022 Eddie Robinson National Coach of the Year Finalist Mike London, the Tribe returns a host of talent on both sides of the ball this fall as it looks to defend its CAA title and make a return to the NCAA Playoffs. Tickets are on sale and available at TribeAthletics.com.
The Tribe will open its 2023 slate at Campbell on Thursday, Aug. 31, while its home opener at Zable Stadium against Wofford will be the following weekend (Sept. 9).