On Wednesday, it was announced that Notre Dame head football coach Brian Kelly was named a finalist for the 2018 Dodd Trophy, which is given to the nation’s top college football coach.
This was according to a release from the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation and Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. The finalists include seven of the nation’s top college football coaches “who embody the award’s three pillars of scholarship, leadership and integrity, both on and off the field.”
Kelly is joined by Northwestern head coach Pat Fitzgerald, Syracuse head coach Dino Babers, Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley, Alabama head coach Nick Saban, Georgia head coach Kirby Smart and Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney.
Kelly and Swinney will square off in the semifinals of the College Football Playoffs, as Notre Dame will take on Clemson. During Notre Dame’s undefeated season, Kelly and the Fighting Irish defeated Fitzgerald and Northwestern, as well as Babers and Syracuse.
“All of these finalists truly exemplify the type of leadership that Bobby Dodd valued and are noteworthy candidates to join the esteemed group of former Dodd Trophy recipients,” said Jim Terry, chairman of the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation. “We’re honored to have such a renowned list of finalists who truly embody Coach Dodd’s spirit, both on and off the field.”
“This college football season was highlighted by outstanding coaching performances that greatly impacted the course of the season,” said Gary Stokan, Peach Bowl, Inc. CEO & president. “These seven coaches have distinguished themselves as finalists for this prestigious award, not only for having successful football seasons, but also for their efforts within their communities and commitment to empower their student athletes to succeed in the classroom as well.”
Finalists were selected by a panel consisting of all previous winners, national media, a member of the Dodd family and a College Football Hall of Fame member.
The winner of the 2018 Dodd Trophy will be selected from the list of finalists by the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation, and will be announced in Atlanta during Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Week.
About the Dodd Trophy
The Dodd Trophy was established in 1976 to honor the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division 1A) head football coach whose program represents the highest ideals on and off the field. The award honors the coach of a team which enjoys a successful football season, while also stressing the importance of academic excellence and character, as did Coach Dodd’s teams during his 22 years as head football coach of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Coach Dodd remains one of college football’s legendary figures, both as a coach and a player. Coach Dodd was a native of Galax, Virginia, and played his college ball at the University of Tennessee where his team had 27 wins, one loss and two ties during the three years he played. Coach Dodd was selected to the National College Football Hall of Fame both as a coach and as a player. Additional information about the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation can be found atwww.TheDoddTrophy.com. For news, updates and insider information, follow us on Twitter at @DoddTrophy or find us on Facebook atwww.Facebook.com/DoddTrophy.
About the Peach Bowl, Inc.
Peach Bowl, Inc. operates the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, one of the New Year’s Six Bowls selected to host the College Football Playoff. Last year, the Peach Bowl celebrated its Golden Season, including its 50-year history of traditions and successes as the nation’s ninth-oldest bowl organization. The Bowl has earned a reputation as one of the most competitive bowls in the country, with 54 percent of its games being decided by a touchdown or less. Peach Bowl, Inc. has disbursed $240.5 million in team payouts over its 50-year history. Peach Bowl, Inc. also leads all other bowl game organizations in charitable and scholarship contributions, giving more than $31.8 million to organizations in need since 2002. Peach Bowl, Inc. also runs the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game, the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Challenge charity golf tournament, manages The Dodd Trophy national coach of the year award and led the relocation and financial foundation of the College Football Hall of Fame to Atlanta. For more information, visit Chick-fil-APeachBowl.com or follow us on Twitter at @CFAPeachBowl and find us on Facebook at Facebook.com/CFAPeachBowl.