WACO, Texas – Sam Houston State head coach Willie Fritz and Montana State’s Rob Ash have been named as NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision Region Five Co-Coaches of the Year by the American Football Coaches Association.
Fritz guided the Bearkats to an 8-3 record and Sam Houston’s second consecutive Southland Conference championship and NCAA Division I Football Championships playoff berth. The Bearkats finished the regular season ranked No. 5 nationally. The back-to-back
Southland titles and FCS playoff appearances in 2011 and 2012 are a school first.
In three years at Sam Houston, Fritz has guided the program to a 29-9 overall record, the most victories in any three-year period in the university’s 97 seasons of football. Fritz is a repeat winner of the AFCA Regional Coach-of-the-Year honor, receiving
the award in 2011 after a 14-1 season that saw the Bearkats reach the national championship game.
Fritz and Ash, who directed Montana State to a 10-1 and the No. 3 seed in the FCS playoffs this year, will face off in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division I Championships Friday night in Bozeman, Mont. The game will be telecast nationally on ESPN2. Kickoff
is at 7 p.m., Central.
The AFCA recognizes five regional Coach of the Year winners in each of the Association’s five divisions: Football Bowl Subdivision, Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, Division III and NAIA. The winners are selected by Active members of the Association
who vote for coaches in their respective regions and divisions.
The 2012 Regional Coach of the Year winners will be recognized at the AFCA Coach of the Year Dinner at the 2013 AFCA Convention in Nashville, Tenn. The dinner is scheduled for Jan. 8.
2012 AFCA Regional Coach of the Year Winners
Football Championship Subdivision
Region 1: Sean McDonnell, University of New Hampshire
Region 2: Brian Jenkins, Bethune-Cookman University & Chuck Priore, Stony Brook University (tie)
Region 3: Dino Babers, Eastern Illinois University
Region 4: Trent Miles, Indiana State University
Region 5: Willie Fritz, Sam Houston State University & Rob Ash, Montana State University* (tie)
Full List (link)