FootballScoop is proud to announce that Matt Lubick (Duke) is the 2012 FootballScoop Wide Receivers Coach of the Year presented by ProGrass.
Duke accomplished the previously unthinkable in reaching the postseason for the first time since 1994. A key cog in making the jump to six wins was David Cutcliffe's passing game and, by extension, Matt Lubick's wide receivers. Lubick produced the top pass catching trio in college football, a group that carried the Blue Devils' offense in each of the team's six wins.
“Congratulations to Matt on this honor – he is very deserving," said Cutcliffe. "An assistant coach is so many things. But it starts with mentor. It starts with care and concern that’s real. Love, if you will. Matt Lubick exemplifies exactly what it means to be a mentor in every sense of the word. Past that, he coordinates our passing game as well as our recruiting efforts. Matt Lubick – no offense to anyone I’ve ever worked with – is simply the best recruiter that I’ve ever worked with.”
Lubick produced the only wide receiving corps in college football to boast three players with more than 60 catches each. Conner Vernon, perhaps the most productive wideout in school history, led the team 75 grabs for 955 yards and seven touchdowns. Jamison Crowder caught 70 balls for a team-leading 1,025 yards and eight touchdowns. Crowder and Vernon ranked third and fourth, respectively, in the ACC in receiving yardage. Desmond Scott rounded out the trio with 61 catches for 606 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
In addition to being the only wideout trio in the country to all reach the 60 catch plateau, the Vernon-Crowder-Scott trio also made school history this fall. Their 206 combined grabs and 2,586 total yards both set school records. Additionally, Vernon and Crowder's 1,980 yards were the most by a receiving tandem in school history, and Crowder became the second player in school history to hit the 100-yard mark five times in a single season.
The play of Duke's wide receivers has helped the Blue Devils' offense jump by more than a touchdown a game - from 22.5 points per game (93rd in the country) last season to 31.3 points per game, which ranks 45th nationally.
Lubick's wideouts helped the Blue Devils set numerous school records this year. Duke topped 34 points in six games, a school best, and Renfree's 2,755 passing yards are among the most in school history. The trio of Vernon, Crowder and Scott accounted for nearly 94 percent of Renfree's passing yardage.
“Coach Lubick is really big on fundamentals and he’s crafted my game monumentally from that standpoint," said Vernon. "He’s a phenomenal coach and a great teacher, but overall a he’s better person than all of that. He’s always putting players before him in every situation. He’s always looking out for us to make sure we’re up to par in school and not just in athletics. He’s more of a mentor than a coach. I don’t really like to call him a coach because he means a lot more to me than just football.”
Duke's wide receivers came up big in the biggest moment of the season, and, thus, the recent history of Duke football. Trailing North Carolina 30-26 with 13 seconds to play, Renfree hit Crowder for a five-yard touchdown pass, sealing Duke's win and return to the postseason after an 18-year absence.
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 (Lubick, David Beaty - Texas A&M, Brent Brennan - Oregon State and Shannon Dawson - West Virginia) were selected based off of nominations by coaches, athletic directors, and athletic department personnel. The prior winners selected this year's winner.
Lubick will receive his award and be recognized at an event at the AFCA Convention in January.
Previous winners of the Wide Receivers Coach of the Year award are Bobby Kennedy (Texas, 2008), Zach Azzanni (Central Michigan, 2009), Brent Pease (Boise State, 2010) and Ted Gilmore (USC, 2011).
First bowl game since 1994
School-record catches, yards for a WR trio
Vernon - 4th in ACC in catches
Crowder - 3rd in ACC in rec YPG
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