My list: Top candidates to win the Broyles Award
Posted by: Pete Roussel on October 22, 2012
The Broyles Award recognizes college football's assistant coach of the year.
Previous winners include John Chavis, Gus Malzahn, Kirby Smart, Kevin Wilson, Jim Heacock, Bud Foster, Greg Davis, Gene Chizik, Brian VanGorder, Norm Chow, Randy Shannon, Ralph Friedgen, Mark Mangino, and David Cuctcliffe.
Since we're past the mid-point in the 2012 season, here is my list of front-runners for the Broyles Award.
Nick Aliotti (Oregon defensive coordinator): Oregon is undefeated, has created 21 takeaways (4th nationally), shut out Rich Rodriguez' offense, is allowing 20 points per game (28th nationally) while limiting opponents to just 29% third-down conversions.
Dana Dimel (Kansas State co-offensive coordinator / running backs / tight ends): Kansas State is undefeated, second nationally in fewest turnovers lost (4), is converting 53% of third-down opportunities, and has the clear Heisman Trophy front-runner is Collin Klein. The Wildcats are averaging 42 points per game. K-State is averaging a touchdown every 11.3 snaps, which is 2nd best nationally.
Dan Quinn (Florida defensive coordinator) : A year ago, Florida finished in the bottom 10 nationally in takeaways. Now, the Gators are 10th nationally with 14 takeaways. Most importantly, Florida is undefeated. The second-half performance to slow Johnny Manziel was impressive, along with the performances against LSU and South Carolina. Opponents are converting just 27% of third-down opportunities.
Bob Diaco (Notre Dame defensive coordinator / inside linebackers) : Notre Dame ranks 2nd nationally in scoring defense by allowing just 9 points per game. The Irish rank 6th nationally in total defense by limiting opponents to just 280 yards per game. Diaco's defense has forced 17 turnovers and leads the nation in red zone touchdown percentage. Opponents are scoring touchdown just 21% of red zone opportunities.
Tony Franklin (LA Tech offensive coordinator / quarterbacks): LA Tech is scoring a touchdown every 11.2 snaps. Think about that. The Bulldogs lead the nation in scoring offense by averaging 56 points per game. They are scoring touchdowns on 85% of red zone opportunities have only turned the ball over 7 times all season. LA Tech is 6-1 with remaining games at New Mexico State, UT-San Antonio, at Texas State, Utah State, at San Jose State.
Les Koenning (Mississippi State offensive coordinator / quarterbacks): Mississippi State is 7-0, but travels to Tuscaloosa on Saturday. The Bulldogs are averaging 36 points per game, converting 43% of third-down opportunities, and have only turned the ball over 4 times all season (2nd nationally). Quarterback Tyler Russell has exceeded expectations by completing 60% of passes with 15 TD / 1 INT.
Kirby Smart and John Chavis are past winners of the Broyles Award. Both are certainly in the mix this year, but it's hard to win the Broyles Award twice.
Others still in the mix: Neal Brown (Texas Tech), Mark Helfrich (Oregon), Doug Nussmeier (Alabama), Chad Morris (Clemson), Mark Stoops (Florida State), Art Kaufman (Texas Tech).
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