THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 27, 2008
Kerwin Bell named PFL Coach of the Year
After guiding JU to the largest turnaround in the country, head coach Kerwin Bell was named Pioneer Football League “Coach of the Year” on Thursday.
Bell, a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award, led JU to a six-win improvement and the school’s first-ever conference championship.
“This is a tremendous honor, but this award is due to the hard work of everyone involved in our program,” Bell said. “This program has come a long way in the past two years, but we’ve still got a lot of work to do.”
The Dolphins turned their season around after a 2-3 start, winning seven straight games – the last being a 19-14 win over Dayton for the PFL title. The six-win improvement is the top in the country, bringing JU to a 9-3 record in 2008 after a 3-8 season in 2007.
Under Bell’s watch, Jacksonville’s record book has been rewritten this season. Quarterback Josh McGregor set a school record for most passing yards, running back Rudell Small has turned in the second best rushing season in the history of the program and Geavon Tribble has enshrined his name atop the school’s receiving lists.
The defense has raised its play as well, holding six opponents to 10 points or less this season. JU is ranked in the top 30 nationally in several defensive categories, led by Tremaine Mack – who had three defensive touchdowns.
“This was a total team effort all season,” Bell said. “Our defense did a great job of keeping our opponents off the field and that gave our offense a great advantage in putting points on the board.”
The Dolphins wrap up their season at the third annual Gridiron Classic in Albany, N.Y. on Dec. 6. Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m., with the game televised on the YES Network.