Credit Source: Notre Dame University Athletics
Kelly, Owusu-Koramoah Claim AP Conference Honors, Irish Selected to AP Conference Teams
NOTRE DAME, Indiana — In its first year as part of a conference, Notre Dame racked up two conference honors and nine All-ACC team selections from the Associated Press, released Monday. Dick Corbett Head Football Coach Brian Kelly was voted AP ACC Coach of the Year, while linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah was named AP ACC Defensive Player of the Year.
On the first team, tackle Liam Eichenberg and guards Aaron Banks and Tommy Kraemer earned nods on the offense, while Owusu-Koramoah and safety Kyle Hamilton earned slots on defense. On the second team, running back Kyren Williams claimed a spot, along with tackle Robert Hainsey and center Jarrett Patterson on offense, joined by cornerback Nick McCloud on defense.
Coach of the Year – Brian Kelly
The winningest active coach in FBS (273ˆ wins), Kelly is the first Notre Dame coach to notch six seasons of at least 10 wins in Irish history. In his 11th season at Notre Dame, Kelly has guided the Irish to the College Football Playoff in two of the last three seasons. With 102ˆ wins at Notre Dame, he ranks second all-time among Irish head coaches, trailing only Knute Rockne’s 105. In addition, he joins Knute Rockne (13), Frank Leahy, Ara Parseghian and Lou Holtz (11) as the only Notre Dame coaches to spend 10 or more seasons on the Irish sidelines. Kelly is the only three-time winner of the Home Depot Coach of the Year Award (‘09, ‘12, ‘18).
Defensive Player of the Year / First Team LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah
The 2020 Butkus Award winner, Owusu-Koramoah is widely regarded as one of the best defensive players in the nation. Also a finalist for the Nagurski Trophy and semifinalist for the Bednarik Award and Lott IMPACT Trophy, the senior has totaled 56 tackles (38 solo), 11.0 TFL, 1.5 sacks, one interception, three PBU, two FR and three FF on the season.
Totaling 38-consecutive starts on his career, Eichenberg has been tabbed as one of the best linemen in the country, being named a semifinalist for the Outland Trophy and twice named ACC Offensive Lineman of the Week. He is a member of an offensive line unit that has been named a finalist for the 2020 Joe Moore Award.
Banks has racked up 30-career starts and was named ACC Offensive Lineman of the Week for his performance vs. Clemson (11/7). Selected to the preseason All-ACC Team, Banks is part of an offensive line that leads the ACC and ranks eighth in the FBS in time of possession, controlling the ball for 33:57 minutes of game time and winning the time of possession battle in 10-of-11 games this season. The 33:57 time of possession average leads the ACC by more than two minutes per game.
Returning to the field in 2020 after a season-ending injury in 2019, Kraemer has totaled 38-career starts and has produced at a high level, even after missing a game due to injury. Named ACC Offensive LIneman of the Week at Boston College, Kraemer is a member of a unit that helps move the chains at a high level on third down. The Irish lead the ACC and rank ninth in the FBS in third down conversion percentage with a remarkable 49.3 success rate.
A Bednarik Award semifinalist, sophomore Kyle Hamilton ties for the lead on the Irish defense with 56 tackles (45 solo) in 2020. Along with a 14-yard interception vs. Clemson in the ACC Championship, he has posted five PBUs, 3.5 TFL and two QB hits.
A semifinalist for the Doak Walker Award, redshirt freshman Kyren Williams has taken college football by storm, reaching the 1,000 rushing yard mark in the regular season finale vs. Syracuse. He has received an ACC weekly honor five times out of ten possible games this season. He currently totals 1,061 yards and 12 touchdowns, adding 27 receptions for 282 yards, in 2020.
Robert Hainsey, a mainstay on the Irish O-Line, is a team captain and finalist for the Senior CLASS Award. He was named ACC co-Offensive Lineman of the Week for his performance vs. South Florida, and has totaled 33-career starts. Also returning from a season-ending injury in 2019, Hainsey is a member of a line that has paved the way for a 1,000-yard rusher in Williams, and two additional players who have totaled more than 400 rushing yards on the season (RB Chris Tyree – 480, QB Ian Book – 430).
Center Jarrett Patterson, a member of both the Outland and Rimington Trophy Watch Lists, earned a second-team nod after only being able to play in eight games this season. Sidelined due to injury, Patterson’s performance in those eight games was impressive, and he finishes 2020 with 21-career starts under his belt.
A graduate transfer, Nick McCloud quickly became a consistent presence for Notre Dame’s starting defense. Named to the Pro Football Focus Team of the Week for his performance at Pitt, McCloud has totaled a team-leading eight PBUs, as well as 29 tackles (22 solo), 2.0 TFL, one interception and a fumble recovery.