Dec. 1, 2005

The American Football Coaches Association announced its 2005 Assistant Coach of the Year winners this week, and Notre Dame offensive coordinator/running backs coach Michael Haywood was named Assistant Coach of the Year for NCAA Division I-A.

One assistant coach in the five different divisions of college football has been selected for their dedication to their teams and communities.

Each year, staff representatives from NCAA and NAIA football-playing schools are asked to nominate an assistant for consideration. From those nominations, a winner is selected by the AFCA Public Relations Committee. The winners for this award were selected in NCAA Divisions I-A, I-AA, II, III and the NAIA.

The Assistant Coach of the Year award was first presented in 1997 and was created to honor assistant coaches who excel in community service, commitment to the student-athlete, on-field coaching success and AFCA professional organization involvement.

The 2005 honorees are:

Division I-A-Michael Haywood, Offensive Coordinator & Running Backs Coach, University of Notre Dame

Division I-AA-Galen Scott, Linebackers Coach, Illinois State University

Division II-Cary Fowler, Defensive Coordinator & Linebackers Coach, Midwestern State University

Division III-Dan Garrett, Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Coordinator/Recruiting Coordinator, Kean University NAIA-Allen Friesen, Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Coordinator, Dana College

“Once again, five outstanding assistant coaches have been selected for their dedication, not only to their teams, but to their communities,” said Executive Director Grant Teaff. “Often times, the head coach receives much of the credit for his team’s success. Any head coach is only as good as his assistants. Much of an assistant coach’s work is done behind the scenes. It is our pleasure to bring it to the forefront.”

The criteria for the award is not limited to on-field coaching ability and the success of the team and players that these assistant coaches have worked with. Service to the community through charitable work and other volunteer activities, participation in AFCA activities and events, participation in other professional organizations and impact on student-athletes are all taken into account in the selection process.

Winners of the Assistant Coach of the Year award will receive a plaque to commemorate the award and an educational stipend to the 2006 AFCA Convention or any other professional development clinic/convention of their choice. They will be honored at the AFCA Kickoff Luncheon, Monday, January 9 at the 2006 AFCA Convention in Dallas, Texas.

The AFCA was founded in 1922 and currently has more than 10,000 members around the world, ranging from the high school level to the professional ranks. According to its constitution, the AFCA was formed, in part, to “maintain the highest possible standards in football and the coaching profession” and to “provide a forum for the discussion and study of all matters pertaining to football and coaching.”

AFCA Assistant Coach of the Year Finalists for 2005

Division I-A
Larry Brinson, Rice
Ron Burton, Air Force
Jimbo Fisher, LSU
Rodney Garner, Georgia
Michael Haywood, Notre Dame
Tyrone Nix, South Carolina
James Patton, Northwestern
Brian Rock, Western Michigan
John Skladany, Iowa State
Bryan Stinespring, Virginia Tech
Bill Young, Kansas

Division I-AA
Steve Carson, Liberty
Galen Scott, Illinois State
Rodger Totten, Mississippi Valley St.

Division II
Steven Aycock, Johnson C. Smith
Tim Beck, Pittsburg State
Scott Browning, Edinboro
Haskel Buff, Texas A&M-Kingsville
Glenn Caruso, South Dakota
Dennis Conner, Stillman
Cary Fowler, Midwestern State
Tom Rogish, Indiana (Pa.)
Mike Terwilliger, East Stroudsburg

Division III
Glen Fowles, Willamette
Dan Garrett, Kean
Phil Martin, Shenandoah
Rob Skaricich, Grove City
Curt Wiese, Marietta

Travis Baker, Eastern Oregon
Allen Friesen, Dana
Dennis Murphy, Benedictine (Kan.)
David Pool, Campbellsville (Ky.)
Matt Welch, Friends

The Winners

Division I-A

Michael Haywood, Offensive Coordinator & Runningbacks Coach, Notre Dame: Haywood has been an assistant coach for 17 years and is in his first season at Notre Dame … For the past couple of years, Haywood pays and hosts a Thanksgiving dinner for a different underprivileged family each year that he is personally acquainted with … He also picks a local family to pay for all Christmas expenses for gifts for the entire family, particularly fulfilling the wishes and needs of the family’s children … Haywood is a long-time volunteer for Big Brothers & Big Sisters of America, acting as a positive male role model to underprivileged or orphaned African-American males … In addition to earning a reputation as one of college football’s brightest young coaches, Haywood also makes an impact on the student-athletes as a mentor, motivator and role model … Irish tailback Darius Walker has rushed for 1,106 yards and six touchdowns this season under Haywood’s tutelage … Also, the Notre Dame offense has smashed numerous records while averaging 38.2 points and 489.1 yards per game in 2005 … In his two years at Texas, the Longhorns’ running attack averaged 232.5 yards per game and the offense ranked in the Top 20 in the nation … Haywood has tutored many prominent runningbacks during his career such as Darius Walker (Notre Dame), Cedric Benson (Texas) and Kevin Faulk (LSU), to name a few.

Division I-AA

Galen Scott, Linebackers Coach, Illinois State: Scott is in his fourth season at Illinois State … Through Mt. Moriah Baptist Church men’s group and Sunday School class projects, he has participated in numerous activities to benefit the young people, elderly and struggling families in the Normal, Ill. area, such as picking up trash and cleaning up graffiti in area parks … Scott is actively involved in other programs such as Men of Integrity, Transportation Ministry (for the elderly), Hope for Future (youth) and supports Save the Children and Key Life Ministry charities … He is a volunteer counselor for the McLean County Juvenile Detention Center, and also spends a lot of time with Relay for Life, Special Olympics, St. Jude Children’s Hospital and Easter Seals … Scott has had tremendous success on the field in his short time as an assistant coach, mentoring Boomer Grigsby to becoming the all-time leading tackler in Illinois State history and becoming the only three-time Gateway Conference Defensive Player of the Year … ISU head coach Denver Johnson says this of Coach Scott, “He embraces and promotes the finest traditions of our great game and holds great promise for the future. He is the kind of guy that my dad would have said, ‘he would like to own stock in.'”

Division II

Cary Fowler, Defensive Coordinator & Linebackers Coach, Midwestern State: Fowler is in his third season at Midwestern State, second as defensive coordinator … He directs the “Read Across America” program at Kate Burgess Elementary School, coordinates the Friday Reading Program at Crockett Elementary School and developed the mentor and reading program at Sam Houston Elementary School … Fowler performed voluntary rehab for a Multiple Sclerosis patient weekly while also working with an athlete in Special Olympics … He has served as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity, is a guest speaker at local YMCA events and organizes the selection of local deaf children as ball boys for MSU’s home football games … Fowler has turned the MSU defense into one of the best in the Lone Star Conference and in the nation … The MSU defense ranked fourth in the nation in rushing defense in 2004 and helped lead the Indians to its first NCAA Division II playoff berth.

Division III

Dan Garrett, Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Coordinator/Recruiting Coordinator, Kean: Garrett is in his third season at Kean and ninth overall as an assistant coach … He organizes book readings at local elementary schools on Dr. Seuss’ birthday each year and works with 24 Kean football players, who are pen pals to kids at Lyndhurst Elementary school … Garrett runs a Pop Warner Youth Football Clinic in Shrewsbury Boro, N.J. during the summer, while also working with other youth league football teams in Watchung Hills, N.J. … He volunteers with the Wee Run Wild 5K race, which benefits the Children’s Museum of Central New Jersey, and along with six football players, teaches around 100 third grade students the sport of football each spring … Garrett is an active member of the AFCA, working on the Luncheon Committee for the past four years, and he is also a member of the New Jersey Football Coaching Association … In his first four years as a defensive coordinator, Garrett’s defense was ranked first in total defense in the New Jersey Athletic Conference … He has coached three Conference Defensive Players of the Year.


Allen Friesen, Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Coordinator, Dana: Friesen is a registered foster parent in Colorado, Kansas, South Dakota and Nebraska … He holds a yearly program to help senior citizens with yard clean up during the fall and helped raise over $3,000 for the homeless in the Blair community … Friesen also helps with clean up of the Optimist Club yearly fish fry … He is an active member of the AFCA, along with being a member of the NAIA Track and Field Association and the Nebraska Foster Parent Association … Friesen instructs first aid and CPR classes at the local Red Cross … He teaches upper level classes in the Physical Education, Anatomy & Physiology and Kinesiology departments at Dana and personally monitors the student-athletes grades in both football and track to make sure those athletes are on track to graduate.

For more information on the AFCA and its programs, log on to the AFCA’s website at