Linderbaum Named Outland Trophy Semifinalist

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa junior center Tyler Linderbaum is one of six semifinalists for the 2021 Outland Trophy. The announcement was made Wednesday by the Greater Omaha Sports Committee. The Outland Trophy is presented annually to the nation’s best interior lineman on offense or defense.

Three finalists will be announced on Tuesday, Nov. 23. The winner will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show on Thursday, Dec. 9. The Outland Trophy official presentation will take place Jan. 12, 2022 in Omaha, Nebraska.

Joining Linderbaum as finalists are defensive tackle Jordan Davis of Georgia, offensive tackle Ikem Ekwonu of North Carolina State, offensive tackle Darian Kinnard of Kentucky, offensive tackle Evan Neal of Alabama and offensive tackle Nicholas Petit-Frere of Ohio State.

Linderbaum has started 31 consecutive games at center for the Hawkeyes after playing as a defensive lineman as a true freshman. Iowa has posted a 24-7 record during that span. Iowa won its final six games in 2020 and began the 2021 season with six straight wins. The Hawkeyes (8-2, 5-2) are ranked 14th in the current coaches poll after being ranked No. 2 in the nation earlier this season.

The Solon, Iowa, native was tabbed a midseason first-team All-American by four outlets, including Associated Press, The Athletic, and Sporting News. He was named preseason first-team All-Big Ten and preseason first-team All-America by five media outlets. Linderbaum was also named to the Big Ten Conference preseason honors list, as well as the Rimington Trophy and Outland Trophy watch lists. He is one of four finalists for the Rotary Lombardi Award.

Linderbaum (6-foot-3, 290-pounds) was a finalist for the Rimington Trophy a year ago and earned first-team All-America honors from The Athletic and Pro Football Focus. He was a second-team All-America honoree by the Associated Press, FWAA, Phil Steele, and the Walter Camp Foundation. He was a first-team All-Big Ten selection by league media.

Former Iowa defensive lineman Daviyon Nixon was a semifinalist for the Outland Trophy a year ago, while offensive lineman Tristan Wirfs was a semifinalist in 2019. The Iowa football program has had four Outland Trophy Winners, fourth among all college programs behind Nebraska, Alabama and Oklahoma. Previous Hawkeye award winners include Brandon Scherff (2014), Robert Gallery (2003), Alex Karras (1957) and Calvin Jones (1955).

Iowa hosts Illinois on Saturday (1:05 p.m., FS1). Iowa closes the regular season Friday, Nov. 26 at Nebraska (12:30 p.m., BTN).