News Release

Lloyd Carr, former University of Michigan coach, to receive Paul “Bear” Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award

Award, presented to legendary Big Ten conference-winning football coach, raises funds for lifesaving work of the American Heart Association

Grant and Award Announcement

American Heart Association

College football coaching legend Lloyd Carr will be the 2024 American Heart Association's Paul "Bear" Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award recipient. The honor is given to college football’s finest coaches recognizing the outstanding achievements and extraordinary contributions made throughout their careers. The Lifetime Achievement Award, sponsored this year by Texas-based Memorial Herman Health System, will be presented during the annual Bear Bryant Coach of the Year Awards ceremony, presented by Marathon Oil, on January 10, 2024, in Houston, Texas.

The American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all, presents this award annually to celebrate Bear Bryant’s legacy and raise awareness and critical funds for research to eradicate cardiovascular disease and stroke, 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 honors a coach for outstanding career accomplishments both on and off the field. The Paul “Bear” Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award, now in its 39th year, 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.

Carr joins a list of college football coaching greats that includes Bob Stoops (2023), John Robinson (2022), Howard Schellenberger (2021), Bill Snyder (2020) and Frank Beamer (2019) among those honored most recently.

Coach Carr concluded his legendary coaching career with a 13-year stint at the University of Michigan (1995-2007) where he amassed a 122-40 overall record and lead the Wolverines to six 10-win seasons. Carr became the first Wolverine coach to win four consecutive Bowl games including victories in the 2001 Citrus Bowl, 2000 Orange Bowl, 1999 Citrus Bowl and 1998 Rose Bowl. He guided the University of Michigan to five Big Ten titles and the 1997 National Championship. Carr was inducted into the state of Michigan Sports Hall of Fame, the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame in 2011.

Carr was born in Hawkins County, Tennessee where he played quarterback for Riverview Community High and led the Pirates to a 1962 conference championship. He played baseball and football at the University of Missouri and then Northern Michigan University where he earned his Master of Arts in Education Administration.

After eight seasons at the high school level, Coach Carr's collegiate career began with two seasons as an assistant at Eastern Michigan University followed by two seasons as an assistant at the University of Illinois. In the fall of 1980, Coach Carr arrived at the University of Michigan to work under head coach Bo Schembechler. He led the team’s defensive secondary for his first seven seasons in Ann Arbor before moving into the defensive coordinator role in 1987 where he remained until being named head coach in 1995.

In total, five coaches will be recognized at the Bryant Awards Ceremony, presented by Marathon Oil, on January 10. In addition to Lifetime Achievement, awards will also be bestowed for Heart of a Champion, Fan Favorite, the Newcomer Coach of the Year and the 2023 Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year.

Fans can follow the action at or or the hashtag #BryantAwards. To attend the exclusive, VIP experience 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 heart.orgFacebookX or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.   

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