66 MINUS 40 DAYS TO KICKOFF: B.J. Finney

Two years after being promoted from walk-on to starting center, B.J. Finney now is an unquestioned leader on this team. - USA TODAY Sports

In which BracketCat counts down the 26th day until kickoff with a profile of offensive lineman B.J. Finney.

BJFinney

#66 B.J. Finney
Redshirt Junior
6-4 | 303
Andale, Kan.

Bio

Position: Offensive Line

Previous College: None

Projection: Starter

Status: On Scholarship

Benjamin J. Isaac Finney II (b. Oct. 26, 1991) is a former walk-on offensive lineman who has turned into a team leader. He is a preseason candidate for the Rimington Trophy, Outland Trophy and Lombardi Award.

A two-time Rimington Trophy watch list honoree and team captain who has started all 26 games in his career, including the last 25 at center, Finney's almost like a buzz-cut clone of his position coach, Charlie Dickey.

The resemblance is most apparent when he lines up with the ball in his hand and channels his will into the captaincy of the offensive line. But when Finney talks, he sounds more like a young (and beefier) Bill Snyder.

Finney is a player who embodies the team concept, and such players deserve all the accolades I can offer.

Finney was a state champion wrestler at Andale High School, and wrestlers tend to make pretty good offensive linemen. Couple that with a blue-collar work ethic and it's no wonder he's made such a strong impact so quickly.

In 2012, Finney was a first-team All-Big 12 performer by the Associated Press and Phil Steele, a second-team pick by The San Antonio Express-News, and an honorable mention selection by the league's coaches.

He also earned votes from the coaches for the offensive lineman of the year award and was a midseason All-Big 12 pick by Phil Steele. Expect even more accolades this season, and possibly some national recognition.

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