BOSTON, Mass. (release) -- Liberty Mutual Insurance today announced Maryville College head football coach Mike Rader among the five Division III finalists for the 2013 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award, honoring coaches who best exemplify responsibility, integrity, sportsmanship and excellence both on and off the field.
Rader coached the Scots to a conference championship this past season and Maryville College's first appearance in the NCAA playoffs.
Now in its eighth year, the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award is the only college football-coaching award that promotes both charity and scholarship through its winners. Since 2006, more than $1.8 million has been distributed to over 100 charities and colleges across the country through the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award program. Should Coach Mike Rader win, he will receive $50,000 from Liberty Mutual to donate to his favorite charities and a $20,000 contribution to the Maryville College Alumni Association for scholarship. Liberty Mutual Insurance will announce the four Coach of the Year winners prior to the BCS Championship game on January 6, 2014, in Newport Beach, Calif.
Beginning today through December 22, fans can vote daily at CoachoftheYear.com or Facebook.com/LMCoachoftheYear.
Fighting Scots fans have a voice in the final outcome, with 20 percent of each finalist's ultimate standing dependent on fan votes. In addition, each vote during this period will serve as an official entry into the "Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Fan Experience Sweepstakes," awarding one lucky fan tickets and airfare for two to the 2014 regular season college football game of their choice. The sweepstakes winner will be chose by a random drawing on December 23.
"Throughout the voting process, Maryville College and their fans and alumni showed tremendous support for Coach Mike Rader, speaking volumes to his importance to the community both on and off the field," said James MacPhee, senior vice president and Chief Marketing Officer at Liberty Mutual Insurance. "Liberty Mutual Insurance is proud to recognize Mike Rader as one of this year's Division III finalists for the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award, celebrating his leadership and mentorship to his players, as well as his dedication to the Maryville and Blount County community."
In all, 25 finalists – 10 in the Football Bowl Subdivision and five each in the Football Championship Subdivision, Division II and Division III – were determined by an objective scoring model endorsed by the College Football Hall of Fame, incorporating such criteria as wins, team penalties, sportsmanship, academic performance by the student-athletes, and charitable commitments in their community and beyond. To qualify for the scoring model, each coach needed to finish among the top 15 in fan voting in his division from September 24 until December 3.
"We are fortunate to have Coach Mike Rader as a part of the Maryville College family. We're proud of his ability to teach our student-athletes about the value of academic achievement and community service while leading the team to success on the field," said Eric Etchison, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications, Maryville College.
"Coach Mike Rader personifies the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award's ideals of sportsmanship, integrity, responsibility and excellence – and we hope to rally our fans and alumni to voice their support him with their votes over these next few weeks."
The other four Division III finalists for the 2013 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award are, in alphabetical order: Jim Catanzaro, Lake Forest (Ill.); Pete Fredenburg, Mary Hardin-Baylor (Texas); Lance Leipold, Wisconsin-Whitewater; and Mike Swider, Wheaton (Ill.). Past Division III winners have been Glenn Caruso, St. Thomas (Minn.) (2012, 2011 and 2010); Steve Staker, Coe (Iowa) (2009); Larry Kehres, Mount Union (Ohio) (2008); and John Gagliardi, St. John's (Minn.) (2007).
The winners, to be announced January 6, 2014, will be determined by a weighted voting system. Fan votes in this period will account for 20 percent of each coach's final score, with votes from two committees of college football media (25 percent) and College Football Hall of Fame players and coaches (55 percent) also being considered.