Henry Frazier III wins Eddie Robinson Award
Prairie View A&M coach honored as most outstanding FCS college football head coach
Chattanooga, TN (Sports Network) -
Prairie View A&M coach Henry Frazier III was named the 23rd winner of the Eddie Robinson Award Thursday night at The Sports Network's Football Championship Subdivision Awards Banquet, held at the
Chattanooga Convention Center on the eve of the NCAA Division I Football Championship title game.
|Henry Frazier III is the first coach of a Southwestern Athletic Conference team, or a Historically Black College or University (HBCU) to win the Robinson Award.|
Frazier is the first coach of a Southwestern Athletic Conference team, or a Historically Black College or University (HBCU) to win the Robinson Award, which is presented annually to the top coach in FCS. Robinson, the legendary Grambling State coach, spent much of his career in the SWAC.
"It is a humbling honor," said Frazier. "It's a great honor to be considered the top coach in your conference and it's an even greater honor to be considered the top coach in the country."
Taking over a program best known for losing an NCAA-record 80 consecutive games from 1989-98, Frazier led the Panthers to a perfect 7-0 conference mark, the SWAC West Division title and their first-ever berth in the SWAC championship game since the title contest was introduced in 1999.
Frazier is 36-27 at Prairie View and has gone 25-5 in the past three years. Prairie View completed its season with a thrilling, 30-24 SWAC title game victory over Alabama A&M. The Panthers hadn't won a SWAC championship since 1964, and 2009 marked the team's second consecutive 9-1 season.
"When we took over at Prairie View, if there were 119 teams, we were the 119th team in the country," Frazier said.
In 2008, Prairie View also beat both Grambling and Southern in the same year for the first time in 35 seasons, and posted its first nine-win campaign since 1953, a feat they duplicated this season.
The 2009 season marks the first time the Panthers have had three consecutive winning years since legendary PVAM coach W.J. Nicks ran off nine straight such seasons from 1957-65.
Frazier also coached the Panthers to the No. 18 spot in the final regular season Sports Network poll, the highest ranking Prairie View has ever held. PVAM was ranked 25th last season, the first time the Panthers had ever made a poll appearance.
In the second-closest balloting in Robinson Award history, Frazier received 24 first-place votes out of the 125 ballots cast by a panel of sports information directors and select media who regularly cover FCS. He picked up 237 points to edge J.C. Harper of Stephen F. Austin by two points.
Jerry Moore of Appalachian State won by one point over Craig Bohl of North Dakota State in 2006.
The Sports Network established the Eddie Robinson Award in 1987. Past recipients of this prestigious honor include current FCS coaches, two-time winner Mickey Matthews of James Madison, Northern Iowa skipper Mark Farley, New Hampshire's Sean McDonnell, Villanova's Andy Talley, Mike Ayers of Wofford and Elon's Pete Lembo, when he won the coveted award with Lehigh.
2009 Eddie Robinson Award Voting
|Henry Frazier III|| Prairie View||24||14||13||9||4||237|
|J.C. Harper|| Stephen F. Austin||21||17||13||9||5||235|
|Andy Talley|| Villanova||16||8||15||8||11||184|
|Dale Lennon|| Southern Illinois||13||16||7||12||7||181|
|Bobby Hauck|| Montana||10||13||12||7||10||162|
|Mike London|| Richmond||6||10||7||12||11||126|
|Jimmye Laycock|| William & Mary||5||9||9||10||5||113|
|Pete Lembo|| Elon||5||7||7||12||12||110|
|John Stiegelmeier|| South Dakota State||6||5||5||9||5||88|
|Al Bagnoli|| Penn||5||6||5||6||4||80|
|Beau Baldwin|| Eastern Washington||2||8||8||3||5||77|
|Buddy Pough|| South Carolina State||4||4||6||5||8||72|
|Tom Gilmore|| Holy Cross||5||2||4||2||11||60|
|Jerry Moore|| Appalachian State||1||1||4||4||6||35|
|Matt Viator|| McNeese State||0||2||4||4||2||30|
|Bob Spoo|| Eastern Illinois||1||1||1||3||3||21|
|Jeff Voris|| Butler||0||1||2||3||4||20|
|Jeff McInerney|| Central Connecticut St||0||0||2||2||5||15|
|Danny Rocco|| Liberty||0||0||1||3||3||12|
|Bob Biggs||UC Davis||0||1||0||2||3||11|
|* - Write-In Votes.|
|Breaking The Line |
|by Samuel G. Freedman|
Samuel G. Freedman's "Breaking The Line" vividly recreates the world of black college football in the civil rights era with a gripping chronicle of the 1967 season for coach Eddie Robinson at Grambling State and Alonzo S. "Jake" Gaither at Florida A&M.