Junior defensive end Morgan Breslin was named one of six finalists for the 2012 Ted Hendricks Defensive End of the Year award, the Ted Hendricks Foundation announced Thursday.
Breslin, who is in his first year at USC after transferring from Diablo Valley College, is tied for most sacks in the Pac-12 with 12 and tied for third in tackles for loss in the Pac-12 with 18 this season.
His tackles for loss and sacks is the most by a Trojan since 2003 and have accounted for 172 yards lost by opposing offenses.
Breslin, who made the 2012 All-Pac-12 second team, also has 53 total tackles, four pass deflections and a fumble recovery for the year.
After leading all California junior college players in sacks and tackles for loss in two straight seasons, the 6-foot-2, 250-pound Breslin joined the Trojans in the spring and USC coach Lane Kiffin praised him as one of the team’s biggest surprises this season.
Nick Perry, who Breslin replaced in the USC starting lineup and now plays for the Green Bay Packers in the NFL, was a Hendricks finalist last season.
The other finalists include Florida State’s Cornelius Carradine and Bjoern Werner, LSU’s Sam Montgomery, South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney and Texas A&M’s Damontre Moore.
The award is named after Ted Hendricks, a three-time All-American at the University of Miami and NFL Hall of Famer.
The winner will be announced on Dec. 5 and honored at the Hendricks Award Dinner in spring 2013 in Miami.