We’ve finally (I think?) come to the end of the 2017-18 college football awards season.
Friday morning, the Maxwell Football Club announced that Georgia’s Kirby Smart has been named as this year’s recipient of the organization’s George Munger Collegiate Coach of the Year Award. The honor comes on the heels of Smart guiding the Bulldogs to the football program’s first SEC championship since 2005 as well as an overtime loss to Alabama in the College Football Playoff title game.
“Coach Smart has engineered a tremendous season for the University of Georgia football program,” MFC executive director Mark Wolpert said in a statement. “The team’s 13-2 record is a great testament to the hard work of Coach and his staff, and also to the dedication shown by the student-athletes involved in the program. Winning the SEC Championship and taking eventual national champion Alabama into overtime in one of the most exciting games in memory are just amazing accomplishments for everyone associated with the Georgia football program.”
Smart is the first UGA head coach to win the award since the first one was handed out in 1989. He’s also the second consecutive coach from the SEC to claim the honor, joining Alabama’s Nick Saban last season.
While the award was originally and still is named after former Penn head coach George Munger, it was renamed in 2010 as the Joe Paterno Collegiate Coach of the Year Award. Following the Jerry Sandusky that cost the late Joe Paterno his job and tarnished his legacy, it reverted back to its original name.