OU's Bedenbaugh named a finalist for Broyles Award

OU offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh has been named a finalist for the Broyles Award, given to the nation's top assistant coach. (SoonerSports)

Oklahoma co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh was named Monday one of five finalists for the Broyles Award, which is given to the nation's top assistant coach.

Now in his fifth season at Oklahoma, Bedenbaugh has guided an offensive line that is among the best and most experienced in the country, as the starting unit has combined for 136 career starts. Left tackle Orlando Brown, a finalist for the Outland Trophy this season, has made 38 starts, left guard Ben Powers 20, center Erick Wren 22, right guard Dru Samia 32 and right tackle Bobby Evans 24.

This season, Oklahoma leads the country in numerous offensive categories, including total offense (593.5 yards per game), offensive touchdowns (72), pass completion percentage (72.2), pass efficiency rating (206.6), percentage of drives ending in a touchdown (48.0), points per possession (3.5), plays of 20-plus yards (104), plays of 40-plus yards (31), plays of 80-plus yards (4) and pass plays of 80-plus yards (3).

OU is also averaging 12.1 yards per pass attempt, a number that is the highest of any team since at least 1996. Additionally, the Sooners are averaging a nation-high 8.6 yards per play. That figure would shatter the school record of 7.6 set in 1971 and would be the second highest for any FBS team since at least 1996.

Four of the Sooners' top seven all-time single-game yards-per-play figures have come this season (1st - 12.0 vs. West Virginia; 5th - 10.6 at Baylor; 6th - 10.3 at Oklahoma State; and 7th - 10.2 vs. Tulane).

Bedenbaugh is joined as a finalist by Auburn defensive coordinator Kevin Steele, Clemson co-offensive coordinator and running backs coach Tony Elliot, UCF offensive coordinator Troy Walters and Wisconsin defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard.

The sixth Oklahoma assistant to be a finalist for the award since its inception in 1996, Bedenbaugh would be OU's fourth winner. Current Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley won it as the team's offensive coordinator in 2015, while former offensive coordinators Kevin Wilson (2008) and Mark Mangino (2000) also took home Broyles Award hardware.

The winner will be announced Dec. 5 at the Marriott Hotel in Little Rock, Ark.

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