Two area football players -- linebackers Mekhi Brown (Carver) and Amonte Caban (Smiths Station) -- were named to the high school Butkus Award pre-season watch list.
The watch list is made up of 51 players from 49 schools across the country and highlights the top contenders for the honor of the nation's top linebacker. Only three others from Georgia and two others from Alabama were listed.
Brown has been committed to the University of Alabama for over a year, while Caban is still weighing his college options. He has offers from Mississippi State, Clemson, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee, Cincinnati and Louisville, among others.
Semifinalists for the award will be named on Oct. 27, finalists on Nov. 24 and winners on or before Dec. 9. Players who do not appear on the pre-season watch list are still eligible to win the award.
Last year's high school Butkus Award winner was Raekwon McMillan out of Liberty County High (Ga.). He is now playing at Ohio State.
The full watch list can be seen here.