A couple of weeks after putting the finishing touches on a perfect regular season that catapulted Notre Dame to an unlikely appearance in the BCS title game, Brian Kelly has landed another major piece of coaching hardware.
The Football Writers Association of America announced Thursday that Kelly is the 2012 recipient of the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award. Kelly becomes the fourth Irish coach to take the honor since its inception in 1957, joining Ara Parseghian (1964), Lou Holtz (1988) and Charlie Weis (2005).
“Notre Dame, under Coach Kelly, has returned to national prominence in the college football ranks,” FWAA president Lenn Robbins said in a statement. “This award recognizes that accomplishment for the 2012 season, a season that began with 124 teams vying for an elusive undefeated campaign. Notre Dame was the only bowl-eligible school to accomplish that impressive feat.”
The award, named in honor of Grambling State coaching legend Eddie Robinson, is the second coaching honor Kelly has received since the end of this season. Earlier this month, he was named the Home Depot Coach of the Year as well.
Kelly’s defensive coordinator, Bob Diaco, was also named the winner of the Broyles Award, given to the nation’s top assistant coach, earlier this year.