Auburn coach Gus Malzahn has been named the Associated Press Coach of the Year, marking what has been one of college football's most remarkable turnarounds regardless of the outcome of Auburn's BCS National Championship Game against Florida State.
After the Tigers went 3-9 overall and 0-8 in the SEC under former coach Gene Chizik last year, Malzahn took over the program and led the team to a 12-1 record, including a win over defending national champion Alabama and an SEC title game win over Missouri that set up a potential national title. Malzahn's zone read-option offense has helped spark the improvement with the SEC's most effective rushing attack and the growth of first-year starting quarterback Nick Marshall.
It was just the latest in a pile of coach of the year honors Malzahn has picked up, including SEC Coach of the Year, Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year and Maxwell Coach of the Year. Auburn was 3-9 in 2012, with all three of its wins coming in non-conference play.