Nick Saban will accept the Bobby Bowden National Collegiate Coach of the Year Award on March 3 in Birmingham, and in doing so ensures the award will have remained in the state of Alabama for its entire existence.
In a statement released by the Touchdown Club, Saban expressed his gratitude over being honored with the award.
“More than anything else, receiving the Bobby Bowden Coach of the Year Award means a lot to me personally because of the man that he is, the person that he is, and the number of people he positively impacted and continues to positively influence today,” Saban said. “He has always done it with such class and dignity in every way. As a coach, you hope maybe someday to be thought of in the way Coach Bowden is, not only in terms of what he accomplished, but the way he did it.
The Bowden Award, presented by the Over the Mountain Touchdown Club and the Alabama Sports Foundation, commemorates the legendary coach, who was raised in Birmingham and played quarterback for the University of Alabama. Bowden was at one point very close to being named the head coach of the Crimson Tide.
The Lifetime Achievement Award will also be given during the ceremony. This year’s honoree is long-time ABC college football announcer Keith Jackson. Previous winners are ESPN College Gameday personality Lee Corso, and Bowden himself.
Created in 2009, the award has been dominated by the state of Alabama, coinciding with the state’s run of BCS National Championships. Saban was the inaugural winner, followed by former Auburn head coach Gene Chizik. Saban won again in 2011, and now it a three-time winner following Alabama’s 42-14 victory over Notre Dame.