Dec. 10, 2009
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Now in its fourth year of heralding college football coaches who demonstrate sportsmanship, integrity and responsibility on and off the field, Liberty Mutual Insurance today named Alabama head football coach Nick Saban one of 10 Football Bowl Subdivision finalists for the 2009 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award.
Saban joins Mack Brown (University of Texas), Pete Carroll (University of Southern California), Al Golden (Temple University), Kirk Ferentz (University of Iowa), Paul Johnson (Georgia Tech), Brian Kelly (University of Cincinnati), Joe Paterno (Penn State University), Gary Patterson (TCU) and Dabo Swinney (Clemson University).
The winner of the 2009 Liberty Mutual award will receive a $50,000 contribution to the charity of his choice, plus a $20,000 contribution to the school’s alumni association for student scholarships and activities. The winner will be announced January 6, 2010, in Los Angeles, in advance of the BCS Championship Game.
Alabama fans are encouraged to vote for Coach Saban online at www.CoachoftheYear.com from Dec. 15-29. The fan vote constitutes 20 percent of the coach’s final score.
“Many passionate fans came out to vote for Coach Saban because he embodies the college football spirit and the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year values,” said Greg Gordon, senior vice president of Consumer Marketing at Liberty Mutual. “Coach Saban has made a great impact on the lives of his student athletes and his community and we are proud to recognize him as a Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year finalist.”
Saban won the 2008 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year and donated his winnings to Nick’s Kids Fund, a charity he and his wife Terry began when they were at Michigan State. Since their arrival in Tuscaloosa, the Saban’s have raised more than one million dollars for the Nick’s Kids Fund, which has been distributed to numerous schools, agencies and organizations in Tuscaloosa County and the state of Alabama.
Saban was named the 2009 SEC Coach of the Year by the league’s 12 head coaches and the Associated Press earlier this week, after leading the Crimson Tide to a 13-0 record and the school’s 22nd SEC championship and a berth in the BCS National Championship Game against Texas on Jan. 7, 2010 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.
In three years at Alabama, Saban has compiled a 32-8 (.800) overall record and has led the Tide to back-to-back SEC Western Division titles. The Crimson Tide has won 26 of its last 28 games, dating back to the 2007 season.
Launched in 2006, Liberty Mutual created the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award to celebrate responsible coaching because it is one of the clearest examples of a positive influence on young people, their families and entire communities. Past winners include 2006 – Greg Schiano (Rutgers); 2007 – Ron Zook (Illinois), Jerry Kill (Southern Illinois), Bill O’Boyle (Chadron State) and John Gagliardi (Saint John’s); 2008 – Nick Saban (Alabama), Mickey Matthews (James Madison), Chuck Broyles (Pittsburg State) and Larry Kehres (Mount Union).