Utah coach lauded for perfect season

Updated: January 2, 2005, 12:25 AM ET
Associated Press

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Utah's Urban Meyer received the Football Writers Association/Eddie Robinson coach of the year award Saturday after leading the Utes to a perfect season and a Fiesta Bowl victory.

The honor was announced Saturday night during the Utes' Fiesta Bowl game against Pittsburgh. Utah finished the season 12-0 with a 35-7 victory.

The other finalists for the award -- first presented in 1957 to Ohio State's Woody Hayes -- were Southern California's Pete Carroll, Tommy Tuberville of Auburn, Mike Price of Texas-El Paso, Iowa's Kirk Ferentz and California coach Jeff Tedford.

Meyer was 22-2 at Utah and guided the Utes to the first Bowl Championship Series game for a team from a conference without an automatic BCS berth.

Saturday's game was Meyer's last with the Utes. He was hired by Florida to replace the fired Ron Zook, but was allowed to coach Utah one last time.

Meyer will receive the award Sept. 3 in his Florida debut when the Gators host Wyoming.

Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press