Brian Kelly wins Coach of the Year Award for third time

Head coach Brian Kelly of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish leaves the field after a game against the Temple Owls at Notre Dame Stadium on September 2, 2017 in South Bend, Indiana. The Irish won 49-16. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – After leading Notre Dame to their second undefeated regular season under his tenure, Brian Kelly has won the Home Depot Coach of the Year Award.

This is the third time he has won the award. The other two were in 2009, when he was the head coach of Cincinnati, and 2012, when he led Notre Dame to the BCS National Championship game against Alabama.

The Irish unfortunately got steam rolled in that game, 42-14.

After switching out starting QB Brandon Wimbush for Ian Book after the Ball State game, the Irish offense has soared.

Book himself is a finalist for The Manning Award, given to the nation’s top quarterback. He’s going up against Jake Fromm (Georgia), Will Grier (West Virginia), Dwayne Haskins (Ohio State), D’Eriq King (Houston), Trevor Lawrence (Clemson), Drew Lock (Missouri), McKenzie Milton (UCF), Gardner Minshew (Washington State), Kyler Murray (Oklahoma), Tua Tagovailoa (Alabama).

Book, a California native, threw 2,468 yards, 19 touchdowns and 6 interceptions during the regular season in eight starts.

Kelly is busy getting the Irish ready for their first College Football Playoff appearance since the BCS was dropped.

They take on Clemson in The Cotton Bowl on Dec. 29 at 4 p.m.

The winner will play the winner of Alabama and Oklahoma.

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