Iowa's Kirk Ferentz wins major national award

Chad Leistikow

IOWA CITY, Ia. – Kirk Ferentz won one of the college football biggies Tuesday.

Ferentz was named Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year, presented to the nation’s top coach by the Football Writers Association of America.

Ferentz had been a finalist for the Robinson award two other times — in 2002 and 2004 — but this is the first time he’s gotten the top prize. A month after turning 60, Ferentz led Iowa’s three-month march to an unbeaten regular season, 12-1 overall record and Rose Bowl berth.

Fry rooting for Ferentz to accomplish what he could not

Ferentz beat out finalists Mark Dantonio (Michigan State), Tom Herman (Houston), Brian Kelly (Notre Dame), Matt Ruhle (Temple), David Shaw (Stanford), Bob Stoops (Oklahoma) and Dabo Swinney (Clemson). Of course, it’ll be Ferentz vs. Shaw in the Jan. 1 Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.

According to Ferentz’s contract, the Robinson is one of the national-coach-of-the-year awards that delivers a $100,000 bonus. Ferentz previously achieved a $50,000 bonus by winning Big Ten Coach of the Year for the fourth time, $250,000 for an undefeated regular season and $250,000 for taking Iowa to a New Year's Six bowl game.

MORE: Purchase a poster commemorating Iowa's season

“It is rewarding to see the hard work of our entire coaching staff and every member of our football program being recognized on the national level,” Ferentz said in a statement. “I appreciate the acknowledgement of our accomplishments. I am honored to share this recognition with our staff, our players and our great fans. And I am grateful to the University of Iowa for providing the necessary support for our success.”

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Even though Ferentz missed out on the College Football Playoff after a 16-13 Big Ten Conference championship loss to Michigan State, he’ll get to go to the national-title game festivities. The Robinson will be presented Jan. 9 in Scottsdale, Ariz., in conjunction with the Jan. 11 national title game.

Here is a list of all-time Robinson winners.