RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – A couple of college football coaches in the Triangle received some national recognition on Thursday.

North Carolina football coach Mack Brown and Duke football coach Mike Elko were named on the 2023 midseason watch list for the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award.

“The Dodd Trophy, college football’s most coveted national coaching award, celebrates the head coach of a team who enjoys success on the gridiron, while also stressing the importance of scholarship, leadership and integrity – the three pillars of legendary coach Bobby Dodd’s coaching philosophy,” the press release notes.

Brown has led No. 10 ranked North Carolina (6-0, 3-0 ACC) to the program’s best start since 1997. The Tar Heels are already bowl-eligible for the fifth consecutive season since he returned to Chapel Hill.

The Tar Heels have opened the season with a 6-0 record twice since 1983, and Brown was the head coach both times. Currently sitting at 280 career victories, Brown only trails Alabama’s Nick Saban (286) among active college head coaches. He also previously won the award back in 2008 at Texas.

Duke head coach Mike Elko, left, speaks with North Carolina State head coach Dave Doeren, right, prior to an NCAA college football game in Durham, N.C., Saturday, Oct. 14, 2023. (AP Photo/Ben McKeown)

Along with UNC and Florida State, Duke (5-1, 2-0 ACC) is one of the last three teams without a loss in Atlantic Coast Conference play. After winning the ACC Coach of the Year last season, Elko is primed to earn even more national hardware after leading the Blue Devils to No. 16 in the Associated Press Top 25, which is tied with the 1994 team for the program’s highest ranking in the past 50 years.

This year’s watch list includes 20 coaches representing all Power Five conferences, as well as the American Athletic Conference, the Mountain West Conference, the Sun Belt Conference and an independent. The other ACC coach to be recognized on the watch list was Florida State’s Mike Norvell.

UNC looks to keep its undefeated record alive against Virginia at home on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.

Meanwhile, the Blue Devils aim to pull off their biggest win so far this year in a road showdown with No. 4 ranked Florida State on Saturday.

Kick-off is set for 7:30 p.m.