DeBoer named coach of the year and Penix wins Maxwell award

Dec 8, 2023, 6:25 PM | Updated: Dec 9, 2023, 6:09 pm

UW Huskies Kalen DeBoer...

UW Huskies head coach Kalen DeBoer stands with QB Michael Penix Jr. on Sept. 30, 2023. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

(Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The UW Huskies were well-represented during when the major college football awards were announced on Friday, with the program taking home two prestigious awards.

How past UW Huskies, including Penix, have finished in Heisman race

First off, head coach Kalen DeBoer, who took over the program last season and has guided the Huskies to a 24-2 record in that span, including a 13-0 record, Pac-12 Championship and a College Football Playoff berth, is was named Home Depot Coach of the Year as the nation’s top coach. Below is a video of DeBoer learning he’d won the award from defensive coordinator Chuck Morrell.

DeBoer has revitalized a program that went just 4-8 the year before his arrival. DeBoer was named Pac-12 coach of the year this season as well as in 2022, and his Huskies are riding a 20-game winning streak, the longest active streak in the nation.

The Huskies will take on Texas, which is led by former UW head coach Steve Sarkisian, in the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 1. The winner of that game will face the winner of Michigan-Alabama for the national championship.

Later on Friday, UW’s star player earned one of the most illustrious awards the nation has to offer.

Star quarterback Michael Penix Jr., who has been stellar as Washington’s signal caller these last two seasons, won the Maxwell Award, which is given to the nation’s best player every season.

The award in and of itself is a huge deal for Penix and for the University of Washington, which has never had a Maxwell Award winner since the trophy has been given out dating back to 1937.

But the Maxwell Award has typically been a precursor to the Heisman Memorial Trophy, which will be announced Saturday evening. Penix is one of four finalists for the Heisman along with LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels, Oregon quarterback Bo Nix and Ohio State receiver Marvin Harrison Jr.

The last four Maxwell winners have also won the Heisman. Eight of the last nine players to win the Maxwell have also taken home the Heisman that same year, and 10 of the last 13 have as well. The last winner of the Maxwell to not win the Heisman was Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, who finished second in Heisman voting to Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray.

More on the UW Huskies

UW Huskies’ Penix finishes 2nd to LSU’s Daniels for AP player of the year
Damon Huard makes Heisman case for UW Huskies’ Michael Penix Jr.
• Texas reporter details what UW Huskies are facing in Sugar Bowl
• Huard: UW Huskies getting a new ‘force’ on defense for CFP
• Pac-12 Networks’ Yogi Roth: UW Huskies ‘very capable’ of winning title
• Why No. 2 UW Huskies got the best path to national title in CFP

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