USC's Su'a Cravens and Anthony Sarao were named to the watch list for the Butkus Award, presented annually to college football's top linebacker.
Cravens, a 6-foot-1, 225-pound junior, moved to linebacker last season after earning Freshman All-American honors as a safety.
Cravens made 17 tackles for losses, including five sacks, in 2014. He also intercepted three passes.
Sarao, a 6-foot, 220-pound senior, last season made 74 tackles, including a sack. He intercepted two passes.
USC's Chris Claiborne won the Butkus Award in 1998.