American Heart Association Announces 2017 Paul "Bear" Bryant Coach Of The Year Finalists

Thursday, December 14, 2017 General News
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1 coach to receive coveted national award on Wed., Jan. 10, 2018

HOUSTON, Dec. 13, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- American Heart Association (AHA) and 2017 Paul "Bear" Bryant title

sponsor Marathon Oil Corporation announced today a powerhouse lineup of finalists for the 2017 Paul "Bear" Bryant Coach of the Year Award – the nation's top award for college football coaches. The winner will be announced live Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 during the awards dinner and ceremony at the Hilton Americas-Houston.

Representing the country's finest college football coaches, 2017 award finalists are:

  • Paul Chryst - University of Wisconsin
  • Clay Helton - University of Southern California
  • Scott Frost – formerly with the University of Central Florida now with the University of Nebraska
  • Gus Malzahn - Auburn University
  • Jeff Monken - Army
  • Kirby Smart - University of Georgia
  • Dabo Swinney - Clemson University

Coaching legend Steve Spurrier is the recipient of the Bear Bryant 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award and will also attend the dinner in January. Spurrier was the head coach at Duke, the University of Florida and the University of South Carolina.

Fans can join the fun now. For the second year, they can add their two cents and vote for their favorite Coach of the Year. Fans donate with their dollars – giving lifesaving funds to support healthier communities across the nation here: The fan vote winner will be announced the day after the National Championship Game.

Fans can also take part in the online silent auction benefitting the AHA. Items are available for bidding online now at Notable auction packages include: A dove hunting trip for two to Argentina with accommodations at a five-star resort, complete with airfare; a seven-night, eight-day European River Cruise; and a visit for two to the FOX NFL Sunday Pregame Show, including a hotel room and airfare for two to Los Angeles next season.

To purchase tickets to the Bryant Awards or to learn more about sponsorship opportunities, please contact 832-918-4009 or visit

Since 1986, the Bryant Awards have raised more than $8.5 million to fund AHA research, advocacy and educational programs across the country aimed at the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases and stroke. Prior to his death of a heart attack in 1983, "Bear" always talked about being bigger than something other than himself and the Bryant Award offers an opportunity to do just that – to be a part of Team Bryant in the fight against cardiovascular diseases.

Lee Tillman, Marathon Oil president and CEO, says the finalists are each remarkable. "These distinguished coaches are leaders on and off the field, and we're honored to welcome them to this elite group," Tillman said. "They represent Paul "Bear" Bryant's belief in excellence and support the Bryant family's commitment to the American Heart Association's mission of building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke."

Again this year, sports aficionados will be able to enjoy the Bryant Awards Show live on FOX College Sports – available through most cable providers.

Now in its 32nd year, the Bear Bryant award recognizes the country's top college football coaches for their contributions both on and off the field. The Coach of the Year Award is the only college coaching honor selected after all bowl games have concluded and is voted on by the National Sports Media Association.

Bryant, the winningest coach in college football history, retired in 1983, but died of a heart attack just 28 days after coaching his last football game. His family reached out to the AHA to create this lasting tribute that recognizes top college football coaches and supports the fight against heart disease and stroke

Marathon Oil has served as the presenting sponsor of the Bryant Awards for the past nine years, underscoring the Company's commitment to the health and well-being of its employees, their families and the greater community.

About American Heart AssociationThe American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation's oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit or call any of our offices around the country. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About Marathon Oil CorporationMarathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO) is an independent exploration and production company. Based in Houston, the Company is focused on U.S. resource plays, including the Eagle Ford in Texas, Northern Delaware in New Mexico, STACK and SCOOP in Oklahoma and the Bakken in North Dakota. For more information, please visit the Company's website at

For Media Inquiries:Sue Davis,, 618.521.1288Kelsey Guy Walters,, 214.706.4851


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SOURCE American Heart Association Houston Gulf Coast


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