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Tarboro's Craddock nominated for national coaching award

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Tarboro coach Jeff Craddock reacts during the NCHSAA 1-AA state championship game against East Surry at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh this past December.

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From Staff Reports

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Tarboro High School football coach Jeff Craddock is one of 32 finalists for the Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Award, the Carolina Panthers and the NFL announced on Wednesday.

Every team nominates a high school coach from its area, with the Panthers choosing Craddock as a finalist during the 2018 season and ultimately its representative on Wednesday.

The winner of the award will be announced on Jan. 27, during the Pro Bowl, which starts at 3 p.m. All finalists will be invited to attend the Pro Bowl and take part in the activities leading up to the game, while the two announced winners will receive $15,000, $10,000 of which will be allotted to the coach’s respective high school.

The two coaches honored will also receive an invitation to attend the Super Bowl.

Craddock, should he win the award as coach of the year, could potentially find himself in a unique situation, with Tarboro grads Todd Gurley (Los Angeles Rams) and Tyquan Lewis (Indianapolis Colts) still in the race to reach the Super Bowl.

In other words, there is a chance the longtime Vikings coach could be in attendance for a game featuring two of his former players on each sideline.

The panel to decide the two winners includes Don Shula, 2017 award recipient Robert Garrett, Pro Football Hall of Fame president David Baker, Tony Dungy, Willie McGinest, Chad Pennington and Condoleezza Rice, among others.

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