The Home Depot Coach of the Year is headed back to Cincinnati, Ohio for the first time since 2009.
On Tuesday, Action Network’s Brett McMurphy reported that head coach Luke Fickell is the recipient of this year’s award.
Cincinnati’s Luke Fickell named Home Depot Coach of Year
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) December 7, 2021
“Cincinnati’s Luke Fickell named Home Depot Coach of Year,” McMurphy announced.
In some of the unlikeliest of circumstances, Fickell led the undefeated Bearcats all the way from the American Athletic Conference to the College Football Playoff.
Fickell took over in 2017 and almost immediately turned things around. After a 4-8 inaugural season, Fickell’s Bearcats won 11 games in three of the next four seasons.
The only year they didn’t was the COVID-ravaged 2020 season where Cincinnati went 9-1.
BUILD. THE. STATUE.@CoachFick has been named the Home Depot 𝗖𝗢𝗔𝗖𝗛 𝗢𝗙 𝗧𝗛𝗘 𝗬𝗘𝗔𝗥‼️
— Cincinnati Football (@GoBearcatsFB) December 7, 2021
Now somehow, someway, Fickell has his team in the CFP for a New Year’s Eve Cotton Bowl bout against Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide.
The last time a Cincinnati head coach won Coach of the Year, Brian Kelly was manning the Bearcats sideline. The now-HC of the LSU Tigers really put Cincinnati’s program on the map during his three outstanding years in Ohio.
In four short seasons, Luke Fickell has seen his profile grow exponentially due to his success. The longtime Ohio State assistant reportedly interviewed for the Lions’ job last year, and remains on the team’s radar.
Safe to say after Cincinnati’s 13-0 record this season, Fickell is on everyone’s radar.