Auburn's Rhett Lashlee finishes as finalist for Broyles Award, Michigan State's Pat Narduzzi wins

rblack@ledger-enquirer.comDecember 10, 2013 

Auburn Football

Auburn offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee was one of five finalists for the Broyles Award, which is annually given to the nation's top assistant. However, Lashlee wasn't able to bring home the award, which instead went to Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi.

TODD J. VAN EMST

AUBURN, Ala. — Auburn offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee was one of five finalists for the Broyles Award.

However, Auburn's offensive coordinator wasn't able to snag the award, which is annually given to the top assistant in college football and was presented on Tuesday.

The winner was Pat Narduzzi, who serves as Michigan State's defensive coordinator. His unit is allowing just 248.2 yards per game this year, which ranks No. 1 in Division I. The Spartans are also No. 4 in scoring defense at 12.7 per contest. Narduzzi's stingy defense has helped the Spartans to a 12-1 record this year. After knocking off undefeated Ohio State to win the Big Ten Championship game last Saturday, Michigan State will head to the Rose Bowl to face Stanford on Jan. 1.

The awards ceremony took place in Little Rock, Ark., Lashlee's home state. The 30-year-old offensive coordinator has been cited by head coach Gus Malzahn as one of the key components to the Tigers' offensive success this season, which has them averaging 335.7 rushing yards per game, tops in the nation. Auburn also ranks among the top 15 teams in Division I in total offense (505.3 yards per game) and points (40.2).

"I (have) got a lot of trust in him," Malzahn said of Lashlee. "He knows this offense inside and out. He really allows me to be the head coach and the head coaching duties that go with a job like this. He does a great job. He's got very good relationships with our players."

Other finalists for the award included Baylor offensive coordinator Philip Montgomery, Duke offensive coordinator Kurt Roper and Florida State defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt.

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