FootballScoop is proud to announce that Jeremy Pruitt (Florida State) is the 2013 FootballScoop Defensive Backs Coach of the Year presented by ProGrass.
Pruitt didn't just hit the ground running in moving from Alabama to Florida State in 2013, he landed on the Tallahassee pavement in a dead sprint. The first-year defensive backs coach turned in perhaps the finest work of any position coach in college football. Consider that he did all of that while also serving as defensive coordinator and it's easy to see why his stock is hotter than Google's circa 2001.
In 14 games, opposing passers completed 222-of-427 passes (52 percent) for 2,193 yards (5.1 yards per attempt) with 14 touchdowns and 26 interceptions. The Seminoles led the nation in passing defense, yards per attempt allowed and interceptions, and finished second in pass efficiency defense.
In raw numbers, Florida State allowed the fifth-fewest total passing yards in FBS this season; the four teams above them each played two fewer games than the 'Noles.
Florida State ranked third nationally by surrendering only 24 passes for 20 yards or more this season. That means, in 427 attempts, opposing quarterbacks were more likely to throw an interception than a 20-yard completion.
Three Florida State defensive backs earned all-conference honors this season: consensus All-American cornerback Lamarcus Joyner garnered a First Team All-ACC nod, safety Terrence Brooks drew Second Team All-ACC honors and safety Nate Andrews claimed a spot on Third Team All-ACC squad.
Pruitt's stellar secondary was the final piece in an incredible Florida State defense. The Seminoles ranked third in the nation in total defense (281.4 yards per game), second in yards per play (4.09), first in total defense (12.1 points per game), eighth in opponent first downs (16.6 per game), second in turnovers forced (35) and eighth in third down defense (31.92 percent opponent conversion rate).
On a global level, Florida State improved from 12-2 to 14-0, bruising its way to the school's third national championship and first since 1999.
A native of Plainview, Ala., Pruitt got his start as a student assistant at Alabama in 1997, and then spent a decade in the Alabama high school ranks before joining Nick Saban's original staff in 2007. He was named Florida State's defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach in December 2012.
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. The finalists (Harlon Barnett - Michigan State, Pruitt and Vance Bedford and Tommy Restivo - Louisville) were selected based off of nominations by coaches, athletic directors, and athletic department personnel. The prior winners selected this year's winner.
Pruitt will receive his award and be recognized at an event at the AFCA 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).
1st Nationally - Total Defense
1st Nationally - Passing Defense
1st Nationally - Interceptions
1st Nationally - Yards Per Att. Allowed
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