Te'o -- in Charlotte, N.C., for the Nagurski Trophy (for the nation's best defensive player) presentation tonight -- got a surprise phone call from Dick Butkus on Monday morning, informing him that he'd been named the 2012 recipient of the Butkus Award, given to the nation's best linebacker.
Later in the day, as expected, Te'o was named one of three finalists for the Heisman Trophy, to be awarded on Saturday in New York. He'll be joined on stage by Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel and Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein.
Te'o finished with 83 points
in the Butkus Award voting system, ahead of Georgia's Jarvis Jones (54 points) and Alabama's C.J. Mosley (21). LSU's Kevin Minter and Oregon's Dion Jordan were tied for fourth.
"He's burned out," said Irish coach Brian Kelly -- who's making the rounds alongside Te'o -- on Sunday night. "There's no question. He's on fumes right now. He also respects where he is in this process, to be mentioned for the kinds of awards he is. ... He's finding the energy to be engaged in all these things."
Notre Dame recruit Jaylon Smith, of Fort Wayne Bishop Luers
High School, also got a call from Butkus this morning, informing him he was the high school winner of the Butkus Award. Te'o was the first high school winner of the award.