Auburn’s Gus Malzahn was named the Paul “Bear” Bryant College Coach of the Year on Wednesday night after leading the Tigers from a 3-9 season to the brink of a national title one year later.
Malzahn said he was honored to be associated with the Bryant name.
“When you’re growing up he’s the man,” Malzahn said. “The fact that I’m from the state of Arkansas and he’s from Fordyce, Arkansas and one of my best friends is coaching high school there makes it even that much more special.”
Malzahn beat out Baylor’s Art Briles, David Bailiff of Rice, Michigan State’s Mark Dantonio and David Shaw of Stanford for the award.
It’s the latest in a armful of honors for Malzahn, who was also named AP National Coach of the Year, the Home Depot Coach of the Year and the winner of the Football Writers Association of America’s Eddie Robinson Award.