Dec. 18, 2013
HOUSTON - Baylor head football coach Art Briles was named one of five finalists for the Paul "Bear" Bryant Coach of the Year Award, American Heart Association announced on Tuesday.
This award honors coaches exhibiting the traits that embody excellence in football coaching, on and off the field, honoring Coach Bryant's legacy.
This season, Briles directed Baylor to its first-ever Big 12 championship and a school-record 11 wins. In his sixth-season on the job, Briles will take the Bears to their first BCS-bowl game next month, after the team achieved a program-high BCS rank of No. 4 earlier in 2013.
Briles' offense leads the nation in scoring (53.3) and total offense (624.5). Meanwhile with Briles at the helm, Baylor has broken 103 school records in 2013, including most points in a season (639) and most touchdowns (85) in program history.
Briles has already been named a finalist for the Bobby Bowden National Collegiate Coach of the Year Award, the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award and the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award. He was honored as the AFCA Region 4 Coach of the Year and the All-Big 12 Coach of the Year by the Associated Press, the league coaches and five other publications.
The Paul "Bear" Bryant Coach of the Year will be announced live at a reception, which will take place on Wednesday, Jan. 15 at the Royal Sonesta in Houston.
Baylor (11-1, 8-1 Big 12) will now play in the 2014 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl vs. UCF (11-1, 8-0) in Glendale, Ariz., on Jan. 1. The Bears will be appearing in a bowl game for a fourth straight season for the first time in program history. The contest is slated for a 7:30 p.m. CT kick from the University of Phoenix Stadium. For more information, visit www.baylorbears.com/bowlcentral.
The other finalists for the award are: David Bailiff (Rice), Mark Dantonio (Michigan State), Gus Malzahn (Auburn) and David Shaw (Stanford).
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