The Woody Hayes Award, named for former Ohio State coach Woody Hayes, has recognized the nation’s top coach each year since 1977. The award is voted on by the Touchdown Club’s committees consisting of coaches, sportswriters, and former players. This is the first time Ferentz has won the award.
The award will be presented at the 61st Touchdown Club of Columbus Awards on Feb. 6, 2016 in Columbus, Ohio.
Ferentz was recognized as the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Region 3 Coach of the Year on Monday, and named Big Ten Conference Coach of the Year for the fourth time in his career on Dec. 1. He has also been named a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award (Football Writers Association of America) and the George Munger Collegiate Coach of the Year Award (Maxwell Football Club).
Ferentz is in his 17th season as Iowa’s head coach. He guided the Hawkeyes to a perfect 12-0 regular season mark, the most wins ever for a Hawkeye football team. Iowa, ranked fifth in the College Football Playoff (CFP) rankings, has earned a spot in the 2016 Rose Bowl against Stanford. The Hawkeyes lost to Michigan State in the Big Ten championship game, 16-13.
The Hawkeyes began the season unranked before moving into the top 25 following a 10-6 win at Wisconsin. Iowa steadily climbed in the rankings and was ranked as high as fourth in the CFP rankings.
Ferentz ranks seventh in the Big Ten Conference in conference wins (76) and eighth in total wins (127). He has led Iowa to 13 bowl games in the last 15 seasons, including eight January bowl events.