LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops is one of 21 college football coaches named to the American Heart Association’s 2021 Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award watch list, announced by the American Heart Association and the Bryant Family today. The award is given annually to a college football coach for contributions that make the sport better for athletes and fans alike by demonstrating grit, integrity and a winning approach to coaching and life -- both on and off the field.
The American Heart Association, the leading voluntary health organization devoted to a world of longer, healthier lives for all, and the Bryant family present this award annually to celebrate Bear Bryant’s legacy and raise awareness and critical funds for research to eradicate cardiovascular disease and stroke, leading causes of death globally. The football coaching legend died from a heart attack in 1983.
Stoops has done a remarkable job in his ninth season at Kentucky, starting the season at 6-0 for the first time since 1950 and leading the Wildcats to top-15 national ranking.
After two games of the 2016 season, his record was 12-26 but he has gone 43-25 (.632) since. Overall, Stoops is now 55-51 at Kentucky and is nearing Paul "Bear" Bryant’s school-record 60 victories.
Stoops currently holds school records for most home wins (40), total SEC wins (28) and total games coached at UK (106).