The Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation and officials from the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl released the preseason watch list for the 2017 Dodd Trophy, which is annually awarded to the top college football coach in Division I.
“The Dodd Trophy is unique in the sense it looks beyond rankings, wins or losses,” said Jim Terry, who is the chairman of the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation. “This is the most-coveted coach of the year award because it measures the overall impact these coaches have on their players and their communities. It includes a select group of individuals who embody the principles Bobby Dodd himself adhered to, such as leadership and integrity.”
“This list represents some of the most renowned and respected names in the game,” said Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Chairman Percy Vaughn. “We look forward to seeing how the season unfolds and which of these coaches set themselves apart from the rest of the pack, both on and off the field.”
Of the 19 coaches on the list, four of them are from the ACC, which is tied for the most representatives of any conference. Clemson coach Dabo Swinney leads the way as the reigning national champion. Others ACC coaches joining him on the list are Virginia Tech’s Justin Fuente, Miami’s Mark Richt and Georgia Tech’s Paul Johnson.
Swinney and Johnson have already won the award. Swinney captured the Dodd Trophy in 2011 when he led Clemson to its first 10-win season in more than 20 years. Johnson won the Dodd Trophy as Navy’s coach when he led the Midshipmen to a 10-2 record in 2004.
The last ACC coach to win the award was Duke’s David Cutcliffe in 2013.