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Former Oklahoma & Current XFL Arlington Coach Bob Stoops to Receive Paul “Bear” Bryant  Lifetime Achievement Award 

Annual award celebrates gridiron achievement and raises funds for lifesaving work of  the American Heart Association 

HOUSTON, October 12, 2022 – The American Heart Association’s Paul “Bear” Bryant  Awards is pleased to honor coaching legend Bob Stoops with the 2022 Paul “Bear”  Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by Memorial Hermann Health System in Houston. The honor is given annually and recognizes college football’s finest  coaches, celebrating their outstanding achievements and extraordinary contributions.  The Lifetime Achievement Award is one of four national coaching honors given during  the Bryant Awards Ceremony, presented this year by Marathon Oil, on January 11,  2023, in Houston, Texas. 

The American Heart Association, a global force for longer, healthier lives, and the  Bryant family present this award annually to celebrate Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant’s  legacy and raise awareness and critical funds for research to eradicate cardiovascular  disease and stroke, the leading causes of death globally. The football coaching legend  died from a heart attack in 1983, just 28 days after his final victory and retirement. 

The Lifetime Achievement Award specifically honors a coach for their outstanding  career accomplishments both on and off the field. Now in its 37th year, The Paul “Bear”  Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award is given based on three areas of criteria as  determined by the Bryant family and the National Sports Media Association: 

● Integrity both on and off the field above reproach, 

● Leadership, dedication and developing the character, integrity and  sportsmanship of young people on and off the football field, and 

● Inspiration and instruction in the development of skills of the game and physical  fitness in their players. 

Stoops joins a list of football coaching legends that includes John Robinson (2022),  Howard Schnellenberger (2021), Bill Snyder (2020), Frank Beamer (2019) among those  honored most recently. 

In total, four coaches will be recognized at the Bryant Awards Ceremony presented live  on January 11, 2023. In addition to Lifetime Achievement, awards will be bestowed for  Heart of a Champion, Fan Vote Favorite, and the 2022 Paul “Bear” Bryant Awards  Coach of the Year, voted on by the National Sports Media Association, current NCAA 

College football coaches, former Coach of the Year Award winners, the Bryant Awards’  Executive Leadership Team and the Bryant family. 

“It is an honor to receive the Paul ‘Bear’ Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award from the  American Heart Association,” said Stoops. “I have spent my career dedicated to  developing players both on and off the field. To receive this award alongside Coach  Mark Dantonio receiving the Heart of the Champion award, and to be named amongst  the coaches that have come before me that have made a legacy in college football, is  a distinction that I do not take for granted.” 

Bob Stoops is best known for his time as head coach of the University of Oklahoma  (1999-2016) where he won the Orange Bowl with the Sooners and earned a consensus  National Championship in 2000. He led the Sooners to the most conference  championships of any Big XII team and in Oklahoma history as the program’s  winningest coach. Stoops was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a  coach in 2021. 

Stoops grew up in Youngstown, Ohio where he played football all throughout high  school. He continued his football career as a four-year starter as a defensive back for  the University of Iowa. He began his coaching career as a volunteer coach and  graduate student in the Iowa Hawkeyes program.  

In 1988, he began his assistant coaching career at Kent State University. The following  year, he joined the coaching staff at Kansas State University where he advanced his  career by becoming co-defensive coordinator (1991) and assistant head coach (1995). In  1996, he joined University of Florida’s coaching staff where he was a part of the Gators’  national championship win over Florida State in the 1997 Sugar Bowl.  

Fans can follow the action at, or or the hashtag #BryantAwards. To attend the  exclusive, VIP experience, contact or visit


About the American Heart Association 

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives.  We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration  with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative  research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century.  Connect with us on, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1. 

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