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Vote: Coach of the Year

12/6/2011

Time to vote for your choice for Big East Coach of the Year. Here are my top four choices:

Dana Holgorsen, West Virginia. Holgorsen was elevated to head coach in the summer after a the school severed ties in a messy divorce with Bill Stewart, and has led the Mountaineers to their seventh straight nine-win season and a share of their record Big East championship. Not bad for his first season ever as a head coach.

Butch Jones, Cincinnati. Jones took a team that went 4-8 a season ago and led it to its third Big East championship in four seasons and a 9-3 record. He also did it without starting quarterback Zach Collaros, who broke his ankle against West Virginia and missed the final three games. The Bearcats dropped the West Virginia game and a game at Rutgers without him, but won their final two to get a share of the league title.

Greg Schiano, Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights were picked to finish last in the Big East this year, but they doubled their win total from a year ago, going 8-4. They also are making their sixth bowl appearance in the last seven seasons. Schiano totally revamped his defense, and the unit finished No. 1 in the Big East. The loss at UConn in the finale might have put a damper on the season, but Schiano deserves credit for getting the team back to its winning ways.

Charlie Strong, Louisville. Strong took a team that started the season 2-4 and got it to finish 7-5 with a share of its first Big East championship since 2006. How the Cardinals got them headed in the right direction ended up being one of the biggest stories in the Big East this season, as they finished the year 5-1 playing some of the best football in the league.

Feel free to nominate another coach in the comments section.