ATHENS, Ga. — Bulldog head coach Kirby Smart has been named one of eight finalists for the 2017 Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award, according to an announcement from the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) in conjunction with the Allstate Sugar Bowl.

Smart joins UAB’s Bill Clark, UCF’s Scott Frost, Florida Atlantic’s Lane Kiffin, Army’s Jeff Monken, Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley, Clemson’s Dabo Swinney and Fresno State’s Jeff Tedford as finalists for the honor.  Georgia’s second-year head coach has already been named the Associated Press Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year.

The winner will be announced on Thursday, Dec. 14.  The official presentation reception will be on Jan. 6, 2018, in Atlanta where the winning coach will be handed the FWAA/Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year bust during a reception in conjunction with the College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship.

Smart, who is already a semifinalist for the George Munger Collegiate Coach of the Year Award, led the Bulldogs to a 12-1 record and their first SEC title since 2005 after routing second-ranked Auburn 28-7 in the SEC Championship Game.

The third-seeded Bulldogs travel to Pasadena, Calif., to face second-seeded Oklahoma (12-1) in the CFP’s semifinal round in the Rose Bowl on Monday, January 1.  Kickoff is at 5:10 p.m. ET.