Cover Photo: Quinn Harris/Getty Images

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly deservingly took home 2018 Home Depot Coach of the Year Award after leading the Fighting Irish to a 12-0 record in impressive fashion. While he's more than deserving of the award, it may have doomed his team's championship hopes.

What Kelly did to put the Fighting Irish in the position they're currently in cannot be understated. Running the table is no small feat in and of itself, but what makes Notre Dame's season all the more impressive is that Kelly had to deal with key losses to his coaching staff and two different QBs lead the team to victories this season. 

You have to like Notre Dame's title chances based on how they marched through their opponents in dominant fashion, despite the adversity they faced.

However, history may indicate otherwise.

The last four winners of the Coach of the Year Award, who made it to the national title game -- a list that includes Kelly's win in 2012 -- have lost the game that matters most. 

Not exactly the kind of historical trend Notre Dame fans want to see. But if any team is capable of snapping the streak, it's Kelly's Fighting Irish.

Well, that is unless they play Alabama. Outside of being the undisputed No. 1 team in the nation, Nick Saban's Crimson Tide has beaten three of the last four award-winning coaches to play in the National Championship Game.

Thankfully, we only have a few more weeks before this all plays out on the field.

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Mike Esposito is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Esposito also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username espo6891. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.