Raekwon McMillan Wins High School Butkus Award

By Jeremy Birmingham on December 10, 2013 at 2:20p

Raekwon McMillan has been right at the top of the list as the nation's best prep linebacker most of the year, and today he was named the winner of the high school Butkus Award in a surprise ceremony at Liberty County High School in Hinesville, Georgia. 

The Peach State star was selected over a handful of the country's most elite linebacker talents, including:

Dillon Bates, Ponte Vedra - Ponte Vedra, FL (Committed to Tennessee)
Kain Daub, Sandalwood - Jacksonville, FL (Committed to Florida State)
Michael Ferns, St. Clairsville - St. Clairsville, OH (Committed to Michigan)
Raekwon McMillan, Liberty County - Hinesville, GA (Uncommitted)
Tre Williams, St. Paul's - Mobile, AL (Committed to Auburn)

Last year's winner, Notre Dame's Jaylon Smith (the brother of Ohio State's Rod Smith,) finished his freshman season at Notre Dame with 58 tackles and one interception. 


  • Size: 6-2/242
  • Pos: LB
  • School: Liberty County (Hinesville, Ga)
  • Composite Rating: ★★★★★
  • Composite Rank: 1 (ILB)

The development from a relative unknown player from an obscure football program to the country's best linebacker didn't happen overnight. McMillan has busted his back day in and day out to become the player, and the leader he is today according to Tony Glazer, one of McMillan's assistant coaches at Liberty County.

"(Raekwon) has grown from a good football player who was quiet who led by example to a kid who was a vocal leader his senior year. (He) turned into the best linebacker in the nation because he was the ultimate team guy," Glazer said. "It was always about just trying to get in the win on Friday, and not how many tackles could he get. He's a better person then he is football player, and I love him like a son."

"I'm more proud of the man that he has become then what he has accomplished on the field. This award is a major accomplishment for him and I know he is extremely humbled and excited about winning it."

McMillan, a 6-foot-3, 245-pound inside linebacker and tackling machine, will be making his college choice on the morning of Monday, December 16th. He's recently had in-home visits from Clemson and Auburn, and this week will host Nick Saban and Urban Meyer. Saban will visit the linebacker on Thursday, and Urban Meyer will make the trip to Georgia on Sunday night, giving the Buckeyes the last shot at McMillan, who was long considered to be a Buckeye "lock," as the recruiting parlance goes. At this point, it's anyone's guess if McMillan chooses between Ohio State, Alabama and Clemson, with Auburn on the outside looking in.

McMillan will enroll at the school of his choosing in early January, so the Buckeyes, Tigers2 and the Tide will be fighting for his services as hard as they can until Monday.

You can see highlights of Raekwon McMillan's senior season here.


Comments Show All Comments

AndyVance's picture

I love the discussion of his leadership - we've been saying all season how one of the biggest needs on that side of the ball is leadership on the order we saw from Simon and Boren last season. Not sure that a true freshman can bring that next year, but I love the idea that we could haul in the nation's best linebacker and that he could provide some much needed leadership as he develops into the program.

O-H-I-Owe-U's picture

Agree. There may be bigger classes out there, but you won't find one with a higher degree of character, work ethic or personal accountability as our '14 class. Those are the immeasurables that will help this class achieve whatever goals they set. Hope Raekwon chooses to be a part of it and becomes a Buckeye legend.

wpitt41's picture

Good call on his leadership! Remember a certain running back who came in as a freshman and led the Buckeyes to a NC?  From everything I remember reading about Clarett he came in and got respect immediately for not accepting mediocre effort from the upperclassmen. He even got in a few players faces.
It is rare but every now & then you get a freshman stepping up as a leader. I'm hoping Raekwon might be next!


TilstheHun3's picture

Booker, Berger, Hubbard, and McMillan... that would be an excellent LB recruiting class! I love how we have the last visit. Come on Raekwon!

What is this? A center for ants?!? How can we be expected to teach children to learn how to read if they can't even fit inside the building?

SouthernBuck's picture

Congrats Raekwon!  

Crimson's picture

I really hope that the McMillan to OSU rumors are true.  We really need another MLB this year.  I'm not sure if Grant is the answer (he looked to be in the wrong gap on one of the last Langford runs, maybe for a TD), so having Mitchell and McMillan fighting for the job will hopefully produce a dominant starter in the middle of the D.  I know the secondary is a mess, but I think we would play a lot better with a solid Mike.

buckeyedude's picture

I'd like to see Mitchell and McMillan on the field at the same time. Both have too much talent to be sitting on the sideline. They both can't play MLB, so find another spot.



ChazBuckeye's picture

BD, couldn't agree more.  Personally, there's too many on Offense and Defense sitting the bench (Marshall, more Wilson even before the TTUN scuffle, Mitchell, Johnson, Apple, Burrows and IF OSU gets R-MC, they HAVE to play him!).  What was the point in saying freshmen will play if they're better and ready.  I'm ready to see them on the field.  Bryant's injury wasn't the down fall of OSU's DBs. It was happening WAY before that, Cal for instance.  

Some people think we’re the hunted.I don’t feel that way at all.We’re the hunter.Everybody wants an angry football team.Everybody wants a team on edge and a hungry team.If you’re a hunter,that usually equates to being hungry.

FROMTHE18's picture

so much possible LB talent will be in columbus next year, over under on how many fickel thinks need to redshirt? 

Borrowed Time's picture

you know you want to play behind our sick D-Line

sharks's picture

Have to think saban to tx rumors have to help our cause

A man got to have a code...

Jeremy Birmingham's picture

Only helps if Kirby Smart doesn't get the Bama job.

Buckeyejason's picture

Meh, after the Dorian Bells, Etiene Sabino's and Curtis Grants I'm over all these "blue chip" Linebacker prospects. 


bleedscarletpissmaize's picture

Never give up hope. It's the last thing mankind has.

Jdadams01's picture

Shazier was a blue-chipper and that worked out rather well.

Buckeyejason's picture

He was actually a rush end coming out of high school..


Madaris32's picture

BuckeyeJason, I'm right there with you. To think, we secured the talents of Sabino and Andrew Sweat, in that awesome 08 class. Meh. However, I'm all for getting the services of as many 5* recruits as possible. Don't forget, maybe Fickell can't develop the 5* lb's, like he can the 3*lbs.

Ivan Madaris

CentralFloridaBuckeye's picture

Way to go Raekwon!  Congratulations!

TexasBuck11's picture

which guy in the above picture is Raekwon?

BSTP DeCon's picture

Who is this Raekwon character that you speak of?
Congratulations, KWon, you deserve it!

buckeyedude's picture

Damn! Look at Butkus! He's a man! And he's about 60!
I swear if we(OSU) don't land Raekwon I will be more disappointed than when Trey DePriest went to Alabama. Chad Mavety was very mild compared to this. I know UFM and his crew has put a lot of time in on RM.



Dr. Kenneth Noisewater's picture

60?   He's 71!!  Dude looks fabulous.   I knew he was over 60, had to Google his actual age.
And I am with you - landing Raekwon is a huge one to me.   Such a desperate need on this team.

Frostybuck88's picture

Must get!  Our linebacker corps needs a serious upgrade.

The Dude abides...

Bucks777's picture

Lebron will be pleased you chose the Bucks!!!  King Raekwon!!!   :-)

Barnsey69's picture

Yeah we need the Kwan bad! Curious though, did we ever recruit the other finalist listed here for the award from St. Clairsville (Michael Ferns)? He obviously has been ingesting too many paint chips since he chose scUM, but I don't remembering hearing about him before...

Thank the Maker that I was born in Ohio, cradle of coaches, US Presidents, confederate-stomping Generals, and home of The Ohio State University Football Buckeyes- 2014 UNDISPUTED National Champions!

Brent Clay's picture

Butkus still looks like he would rip your head off and piss down your neck, rather than shake your hand...... Dude is still intimidating to look at! 
Butkus = the original linebacker, he made the position what it is today.