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Whittingham On Watch List For Award Celebrating Scholarship, Leadership

Head coach Kyle Whittingham looks on during the first quarter of the game against the Oregon Ducks at Autzen Stadium on November 16, 2013 in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Head coach of Utah Football, Kyle Whittingham, has been named to the Dodd Trophy Award watch list through midway point in the season.

Whittingham has led the Utes to a 5-1 record and a spot at the top of the Pac-12 South.

The beloved coach has been at Utah since 1994 when he began as a defensive line coach. He moved onto the defensive coordinator position before solidifying his role as the head coach in 2005.

Whittingham played linebacker for BYU in the late ’70s and early ’80s.

“Coach Whit taught me what it truly means to be disciplined. The expectations that were set, well let’s just say, you bloody better meet them,” said former Utah punter and Whittingham project Tom Hackett, “but he had a genuine ability to protect his players like family.”

The Dodd Trophy celebrates a coach with football success but also emphasizes the importance of scholarship and integrity.

The University of Utah holds the highest student-athlete graduation success rate among all Power 5 schools. The football team has had its highest percentages of success in the last two years.

“This group of coaches go out every single day and work hard to embody the scholarship, leadership and integrity that Coach Dodd cared about so much,” said Jim Terry, chairman of the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation. “This award is more than just winning on the field, and every one of these coaches cares deeply about seeing his players grow and mature as young men on top of winning football games. That is what The Dodd Trophy is all about.”

Other coaches on the list include Paul Chryst (Wisconsin), Mario Cristobal (Oregon), Herm Edwards (Arizona State) and Chris Petersen (Washington).