Georgia football-Kirby Smart-Jack Podlesny-SEC
Georgia head coach Kirby Smart celebrates his second SEC Championship as head coach of the Bulldogs. (Jeff Sentell / DawgNation)

Kirby Smart, Jack Podlesny take home SEC honors for Coach, Special Teams Player of the Year

Two more Bulldogs picked up honors on Wednesday, with Kirby Smart winning SEC Coach of the Year as voted on by the Coaches. Kicker Jack Podlesny was also named the conference’s Special Teams Player of Year.

Smart did not win the Coach of the Year award as voted on by the AP, as that went to Josh Heupel. Smart led Georgia to a 13-0 record and SEC championship this season. The Bulldogs are back in the College Football Playoff after losing 15 players to the NFL draft.

Georgia is also the defending national champion as well.

“This has been a different group,” Smart said after beating LSU. “You guys have tried to label them, tried to figure ‘em out, tried to analyze ‘em. They’re not comprehendible. They do what they have to do, and they do it well. They care about each other and they really do it for each other.”

Podlesny made 23 of his 26 kicks this season, with a long of 50 yards in the win over Kentucky. He made all 61 of his extra points and handled kickoff duties for the Bulldogs. Podlesny was named First Team All-SEC kicker as well, after leading the conference in made field goals and made field goal percentage.

Georgia also saw quarterback Stetson Bennett win the Burlsworth Trophy this week, which goes to the nation’s top player who began his career as a walk-on. Smart is also a finalist for the FWAA Coach of the Year award. Todd Monken was a finalist for the Broyles Award, which goes to the nation’s top assistant coach.

The offensive line was also named a finalist for the Joe Moore Award, which goes to the nation’s top offensive line. Michigan was the other finalist.

Bennett is also a Heisman Trophy finalist. He joins TCU’s Max Duggan, Ohio State’s CJ Stroud and USC’s Caleb Williams. The winner will be announced on Saturday night.

Smart, Podlesny and the Bulldogs will next take the field on Dec. 31 when they play the Buckeyes in the College Football Playoff.

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