FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
TULSA – Arizona Rattlers GM/HEAD COACH KEVIN GUY has been named the 2011 NFL Network Head Coach of the Year, the AFL League Office announced today. Guy led the Rattlers to an unprecedented 16-2 regular season record in 2011.
When Guy took the helm with Arizona in 2008, the team was coming off a disappointing 4-12 season, the second-worst record in the League. In 2008, Guy led the Rattlers to an 8-8 record and a postseason berth. In 2010, the Rattlers improved their record again, this time to 10-6.
In Guy’s third year as Head Coach, the Rattlers have improved tremendously, setting a new AFL record for most wins in a season with 16. Guy also became the only coach in Arizona franchise history to reach the postseason in each of his first three seasons with the club.
Known as a defensive mind, Guy’s defense has set the tone this year. Arizona has created 54 turnovers, translating to a League-best +33 turnover margin. However, the other phases of the game have come together in 2011 under Guy’s watch. Arizona’s offense converted 57-of-92 third down attempts on the season for a League-high 62.0 percent conversion mark and also averaged 61.9 points per game, the second-highest in the League. The Rattlers special teams unit averaged a League-high 20.3 yards per kickoff return and managed to take back a League-best eight kickoffs for touchdowns.
Guy’s Rattlers defeated the Chicago Rush last Saturday to earn an ArenaBowl XXIV Championship berth this Friday night. It is the sixth time in franchise history Arizona has made an appearance in the championship game, but the first time since 2004. With a win, the Rattlers would become the first team in AFL history to win 19 games in one season.
The runner-up for the Head Coach of the Year award is Chicago Rush HEAD COACH BOB McMILLEN. McMillen led the Rush to a 13-5 record and a Central Division championship in his first season as Head Coach in Chicago. After a stellar playing career in which he won ArenaBowl championships with three different teams and was named one of the 20 Greatest Players in AFL History, McMillen was hired to coach Fullbacks and Linebackers in August 2007. In 2010, he served as the team’s Assistant Head Coach and Line Coach before being promoted after the season to his current post. The former FB/LB introduced a stingy, hard-nosed brand of football in 2011 that saw the Rush become the number one scoring defense and fifth-ranked rushing attack in the League. The Rush came within a game of the ArenaBowl title, losing in the National Conference championship to Guy’s Rattlers.
About the AFL
Since its inception in 1987, the AFL has provided the fast-paced and exciting game of Arena Football to millions of fans in a myriad of markets across the country. The NFL Network will once again broadcast an AFL National Game of the Week for the entire regular and post season on Friday nights at 8:00 pm EST, culminating with the ArenaBowl Championship Game on August 12.