The FootballScoop Coaches of the Year awards, presented by ProGrass, are the only set of awards that recognize the most outstanding position coaches in college football. Finalists were selected based off of nominations by coaches, athletic directors and other athletic department personnel. The winner will be chosen by the previous winners of this award and will be announced in January. 

The 2013 FootballScoop Coaches of the Year will be recognized and will receive their awards at an event held in their honor at the American Football Coaches Association’s annual convention in January. 

Previous winners of the Defensive Backs Coach of the Year award are Tim Billings (Wake Forest – 2008), Everett Withers and Troy Douglas (North Carolina – 2009), Chad Glasgow and Clay Jennings (TCU – 2010), Ron Cooper (LSU – 2011) and Bill Busch and Kendrick Shaver (Utah State – 2012).

Harlon Barnett Defensive Backs Coach of the Year Finalist



Michigan State’s defense turned in the best 2013 season in college football, and Harlon Barnett’s secondary deserves praise for allowing that to happen. In defending 430 pass attempts this season, opponents completed only 203 throws (47.2 completion percentage, third nationally), for 2,176 yards (167.4 yards per game, fifth) and only 5.1 yards per attempt (trailing only Florida State in FBS) with 12 touchdowns and 16 interceptions.

As a whole, opposing quarterbacks compiled a 91.48 quarterback rating, the second-lowest in the nation. A whopping three Michigan State defensive backs were named First Team All-Big Ten performers by the league’s coaches, and Darqueeze Dennard was recognized as an All-American. And, of course, Bennett’s secondary helped Michigan State lead the nation in total defense (248.2 yards per game) and yards per play (3.94) en route to a Big Ten championship.

CoY2013-120-150 Key Stats:

2nd in pass efficiency defense (91.48) 

2nd in yards per attempt allowed (5.1)

3rd in completion percentage allowed (47.2)

5th in pass defense (167.4 yards per game)

Jeremy Pruitt Defensive Backs Coach of the Year Finalist

Jeremy Pruitt




Jeremy Pruitt pulled double-duty this season, and did it very well. He helped Florida State reach the BCS National Championship as defensive coordinator, and still led the Seminoles’ secondary to perhaps the best season of any position group in the country. Florida State led the nation in pass defense (152 yards per game allowed), pass efficiency defense (90.90), yards per attempt allowed (4.9), interceptions (25), and passing plays of 20-plus yards (19).

Three Florida State secondary members earned All-ACC honors, and senior cornerback Lamarcus Joyner was a consensus All-American. Pruitt’s group proved to be a key cog in helping the Seminoles lead the nation in scoring defense (10.7 points per game) and rank second nationally in yards per play allowed (4.2).  

CoY2013-120-150 Key Stats:

1st in pass defense (152 yards per game)

1st in defensive pass efficiency (90.90)

1st in yards per attempt allowed (4.9)

1st in interceptions (25)

Vance Bedford/ Tommy Restivo Defensive Backs Coach of the Year Finalist

Vance Bedford

Tommy Restivo 



Opposing passers threw 373 passes in Louisville’s 13 games this season. Only eight of them found the end zone, the lowest total in college football. The Cardinals joined Florida State as the only team to double the numbers of interceptions claimed to touchdown passes allowed, stepping in front of 16 throws this season.

Restivo and Bedford’s secondary was one of only five in college football to post a sub-100 pass efficiency rating, as the Cardinals allowed only a 50.7 completion percentage and six yards per attempt to go with its 2:1 interception-to-touchdown ratio. The secondary helped Louisville’s defense as a whole rank third nationally in scoring defense (12.2 points per game) and yards per play (4.2) and second in total defense (251.5 yards per game). Louisville finished the season 12-1 with a dominant win over Miami in the Russell Athletic Bowl.  

CoY2013-120-150 Key Stats: 

1st in touchdown passes allowed (8)

5th in pass efficiency defense (99.17)

2nd in total defense (251.5 yards per game)

7th in completion percentage allowed (50.7)

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National columnist - Zach joined the staff in 2012...and has been attempting to improve Doug and Scott's writing ability ever since (to little avail). Outside of football season, you can find him watching the San Antonio Spurs reading Game of Thrones fan theories.