8-4 teams don’t usually garner much attention when it comes to postseason awards, unless you have a rare Robert Griffin III type talent or a great story. This Penn State team had the latter, especially amongst the senior class and coaching staff. The various post season awards committees have taken notice.
Head coach Bill O’Brien has already collected Coach of the Year honors in the Big 10 conference, and on Monday, was announced as one of nine finalists for the Eddie Robinson Award for national coach of the year. The other finalists are Gary Andersen (Utah State), Dave Doeren (Northern Illinois), Brian Kelly (Notre Dame), Urban Meyer (Ohio State), Will Muschamp (Florida), David Shaw (Stanford), Bill Snyder (Kansas State) and Kevin Sumlin (Texas A&M). O’Brien is likely one of hte favorites along with Urban Meyer and Brian Kelly . The Robinson Award is voted on by the Football Writers Association of America. O’Brien was also named a finalist for the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award today, along with Kelly, Meyer, Jim Mora, Jr. (UCLA), Nick Saban (Alabama), Mark Richt (Georgia),Snyder, Charlie Strong (Louisville), Sumlin and Dabo Swinney (Clemson). The Liberty Mutual Award is voted on by a combination of College Football Hall of Famers, national media and fan voting. Fans can log their vote at www.coachoftheyear.com.
The coaching staff was not the only honoree on Monday, as center Matt Stankiewitch was named one of 5 finalists for the Rimington Award, as the nation’s top center. Joining the senior are Mario Benavides (Louisville), Braxston Cave (Notre Dame), Dalton Freeman (Clemson), Khaled Holmes (USC) and Barrett Jones (Alabama). Stankiewitch. Former PSU center A.Q. Shipley was honored as the 2008 Rimington Award winner.
Earlier on Monday, Matt McGloin was named as the winner of the Burlington Award as the nation’s top former walk-on.
Congratulations to all of of PSU’s honorees!
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