TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 2007
Cliff Warren named a finalist for two national Coach of the Year awards
Finalists for the Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year
Finalists for the Hugh Durham Mid-Major Coach of the Year
Feb. 20, 2007
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - In the midst of one of the largest single-season turnarounds in NCAA history, JU head coach Cliff Warren was named a finalist for the Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year Award and the Hugh Durham Mid-Major Coach of the Year Award on Tuesday.
Warren, who played for Phelan at Mount St. Mary's, has rebuilt the Dolphins after Durham's departure with the help of a energetic mix of young and veteran players throughout the lineup, lifting JU into the top half of the Atlantic Sun Conference standings.
"To have my name mentioned with these other college coaches who have done a great job at their programs this season is very humbling," Warren said. "To have the awards named after these two Hall of Fame coaches who have both been instrumental in my coaching career and to even be considered for the award is something very special."
In his first season at JU, Warren's squad won just one game. A year later, he has brought the Dolphins back into the city's spotlight.
"I'm very thankful for being considered for this award, but we still have a lot of work left to do this season," Warren said.
Warren joins a prestigious list of coaches on the list of finalists. Other finalists of note include Memphis' John Calipari, Florida's Billy Donova, Texas A&M's Billy Gillispie, UCLA's Ben Howland, Butler's Todd Lickliter and Vanderbilt's Kevin Stallings.
The finalist for the Durham Award include Santa Clara's Dick Davey, Appalachian State's Houston Francher, Louisiana-Monroe's Orlando Early, Butler's Lickliter, Winthrop's Gregg Marshall,
The Jim Phelan Award is given annually to the nation's top coach, as voted on by the 20-member panel. The Hugh Durham Award is given annually to the nation's top mid-major coach, as voted on by the 20-member panel. The winners will be presented with the award at the Final Four in Atlanta.
Previous winners of the Phelan Award are Howland (2006), Tubby Smith (Kentucky, 2005), Phil Martelli (St. Joseph's, 2004) and Mark Slonaker (Mercer, 2003). Previous winners of the Durham Award are Pat Flannery, Bucknell (2006) and Bob Thomason, Pacific (2005).
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