The coveted top honor in college football, the crystal “Coaches’ Trophy”, as it is known, is fought for and won following the FedEx BCS Championship Game in January, in an on-field ceremony following the game.
The “official” name for the “Coaches’ Trophy” is….
…the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) National Championship Trophy and is awarded by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) to the winner of college football’s BCS National Championship Game, which determines the national champion for purposes of the Coaches Poll. The trophy has been awarded since 1986 and has been tied to the winner of the BCS National Championship Game since 1998. The winning institution retains the AFCA Trophy for permanent display on campus, as a new one is awarded every year.
The trophy is made of a Waterford® Crystal actual size crystal football affixed to an ebony base, and has an estimated value of over $30,000 (est.2009). The overall trophy is 34 inches tall and weighs 45 pounds. The football portion of the trophy weighs approximately 7 pounds. It is handmade by an artist in Ireland and takes nearly 3 months to complete. The handmade Crystal football is an exquisite design that contains intricate deep cuts that reflect a rainbow of color and light–making each one truly a work of art. It is designed to become a cherished heirloom. This elegant trophy is a proud treasure symbolizing monumental hard work, dedication and success. It is the top award in NCAA Division 1 Football.
The trophy has undergone several sponsorship changes over the years. It was sponsored by the Gerrits Foundation during the initial 1986 and 1987 seasons. Pepsi came aboard as a co-sponsor in 1988 and 1989. McDonald’s was the sole sponsor from 1990 until 1992. Sears became the trophy’s sponsor in 1993 and remained so until 2001. Circuit City assumed sponsorship duties for the 2002season. ADT Security Services, the current sponsor, took over in 2003. As the sponsor obtains naming rights to the trophy, its current name is actually the “ADT National Championship Trophy.”
Since 1986, the winner of the UPI or USA Today Coaches’ Poll has received the Coaches’ Trophy.
A little known fact of the Coaches’ Trophy… is that in 2006 the triumphant University of Florida football team suffered an accident with the BCS championship trophy. The awarded and coveted crystal trophy was knocked off its pedestal and destroyed. No details of who was responsible or how it was destroyed are known. A new trophy was created and presented. The Gators have won three national championships, also earning crystal footballs in 1996 and 2006.