Presented annually to the best assistant coach in college football, the Broyles Award released their list of 41 nominees for the 24th edition of the honor on Wednesday.
The award’s official Twitter account shared the news:
— BROYLES AWARD (@BroylesAward) November 13, 2019
Of the 41 nominees, seven reside in the B1G – tied with the SEC for most of any conference.
Listed in alphabetical order, Indiana Hoosiers offensive coordinator Kalen DeBoer is making a strong impression in Bloomington. Joining the Hoosiers this season after two years with the Fresno State Bulldogs, his unit is averaging 34 points per game, 33rd in the FBS.
In his 21st year with the Iowa program, Hawkeyes defensive coordinator/defensive backs coach Phil Parker is the second nominee. Originally joining the staff in Iowa City in 1999, Parker was elevated to defensive coordinator in 2012. Iowa (6-3) is holding opponents to 11.7 points per game, fourth in America.
Another one of the conference’s best defensive coordinators, Michigan’s Don Brown is also up for the award. In his fourth season on Jim Harbaugh’s staff, Brown is handling the responsibility of coaching linebackers in addition to his coordinator duties. Replacing Devin Bush, Rashan Gary, Tyree Kinnel, David Long and Chase Winovich off last year’s defense, the 2019 Wolverines have allowed 154 points (17.1 PPG), 11th in college football.
Transitioning back to the offensive side of the football, Minnesota Golden Gophers coordinator/quarterbacks coach Kirk Ciarrocca made an appearance on the list. Up to No. 8 in the latest CFP rankings, Ciarrocca has worked wonders with redshirt sophomore Tanner Morgan. Winning the starting job in fall camp, Morgan has completed 67.9% of his passes for 2,100 yards, 21 touchdowns and just four interceptions.
One of the best recruiters in the country, Ohio State co-defensive coordinator/secondary coach Jeff Hafley has earned his nomination. Of the 24 current verbal commits in the Buckeyes’ 2020 class, Hafley has served as either the primary or secondary recruiter for eight of them.
Two more defensive coordinators – Penn State’s Brent Pry and Wisconsin’s Jim Leonhard – round out the list. Both men oversee top-seven defenses using points per game.
Working with James Franklin since their days at Vanderbilt, Pry is in his fourth season as the Nittany Lions’ sole defensive coordinator.
A rising star in the coaching industry, the 37-year-old Leonhard joined Paul Chryst’s staff in 2016 after a 10-year career in the National Football League with the Buffalo Bills (2005-07, 2013), Baltimore Ravens (2008), New York Jets (2009-11), Denver Broncos (2012), New Orleans Saints (2013) and Cleveland Browns (2014).
Serving as the defensive backs coach during his first year in Madison, he is now in his third season as the Badgers’ coordinator.