Tennessee didn’t play for a championship this season, but that didn’t dissuade Associated Press voters from naming coach Josh Heupel the top coach in the SEC.
In just his second season at Tennessee, Heupel was named the AP SEC coach of the year on Monday. He edged out LSU’s Brian Kelly by one vote. Heupel had six to Kelly’s five. Georgia’s Kirby Smart had three votes while South Carolina’s Shane Beamer had one.
The No. 6 Vols will face No. 10 Clemson in the Orange Bowl on Dec. 30. The Vols were predicted to win seven or eight games this fall but finished the season with a 10-2 record and were ranked the No. 1 team in the nation for one week in October.