Officials from the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation and Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl have announced the creation of The Dodd Trophy Coach of the Week Award, honoring college football coaches whose teams and players excelled during the previous week on the field and in the classroom and community.
Duke Head Coach David Cutcliffe – who won The Dodd Trophy in 2013 – has been selected as the inaugural Dodd Trophy Coach of the Week, in recognition of his team’s accomplishments last week.
“Coach Cutcliffe is an outstanding example of a coach who understands the value in building leaders on and off the field,” said Jim Terry, Chairman of the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation. “We’re proud to recognize his ongoing accomplishments and look forward to seeing his continued success this season.”
Duke currently sits atop the ACC Coastal Division with Saturday’s 51-48 double-overtime victory over Pittsburgh, expanding its record to 7-1 overall and 3-1 in the division.
In addition to a major conference win, two members of the Duke Football team earned national awards for success on the field, and in the classroom and community last week.
Duke senior linebacker David Helton was named one of 17 recipients of the 2014 National Football Foundation National Scholar-Athlete Award. The award recognizes the total student-athlete for his combined athletic, academic and leadership abilities. Helton and 16 other recipients comprise the list of finalists for the William V. Campbell Trophy, which will be awarded at the end of the season.
On the field, Helton has recorded a team-high 69 tackles and ranks third in the ACC with 9.86 tackles per game. In the classroom, Helton holds a 3.64 GPA, is a three-time Academic All-ACC selection and last year earned Academic All-District accolades.
Senior guard Laken Tomlinson was named to the 22-member Allstate American Football Coaches Association Good Works Team. The award recognizes college football players who have positively impacted their communities and the lives of others through service. This past year Tomlinson participated in a two-week mission trip to Ethiopia to help dig freshwater wells. Additionally, he is active in a number of other service projects in the Durham community including White Rock Baptist Church, Durham Rescue Mission, Ronald McDonald House and Durham School of the Arts.
Overall, under Cutcliffe’s leadership, the Duke Football team boasts a 90% graduation rate, the second-highest of any team in the current Top 25 AP Poll. The Blue Devils also rank first in Academic Progress Rate amongst Division I football schools, with a score of 992.
The Dodd Trophy – along with the Dodd Trophy Coach of the Week Award – celebrates the head coach of a team that enjoys success on the gridiron, while also stressing the importance of scholarship, leadership and integrity.
The winner of the 2014 Dodd Trophy will be announced in Atlanta during Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl week. A panel consisting of all previous winners, national media, a member of the Dodd family and a College Football Hall of Fame member will identify the final list of potential recipients at the conclusion of the 2014 season.