Fresh off leading Pitt to its first-ever ACC championship, it’s not just Kenny Pickett who is raking in the post-season honors. Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi is officially a finalist for the Robinson Coach of the Year.
The Robinson COY honor is awarded to the best coach in Division I football as voted upon by the Football Writers Association of America.
Robinson Coach of the Year 🏆 Finalist
— Pitt Football (@Pitt_FB) December 7, 2021
As the helmsman of Pitt’s best season since 1981, with the chance to match a program-best 12 wins with a win over No. 10 Michigan State in the Peach Bowl, Narduzzi’s inclusion isn’t surprising. Pitt’s No. 12 ranking in the College Football Playoff poll is the highest it’s ever been, and with a win, that would surely climb into the Top 10.
Pitt is 53-36 under Narduzzi, with only one losing season during his time in Pittsburgh, and the Panthers’ 36 ACC wins are the third-most in the conference since 2015. Pitt has won the ACC Coastal twice during that spanning, winning its first outright title this season.
The other finalists for the honor are Utah State’s Blake Anderson, Baylor’s Dave Aranda, Northern Illinois’s Thomas Hammock, Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh, Louisiana’s Billy Napier, Alabama’s Nick Saban, BYU’s Kalani Sitake, Georgia’s Kirby Smart, UTSA’s Jeff Traylor, Michigan State’s Mel Tucker and Utah’s Kyle Whittingham.
Wake Forest’s Dave Clawson won the ACC Coach of the Year honors this season for leading the Demon Deacons to the ACC title game, but Narduzzi got the last laugh in beating Clawson and Wake Forest in the title game.
Johnny Majors is the only Pitt coach to ever win the Robinson COY, winning the honor in 1973 and 1976.