Nebraska Football: Erik Chinander fired, Bill Busch takes over as DC

Scott Frost of the Nebraska Cornhuskers and defensive coordinator Erik Chinander walk (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)
Scott Frost of the Nebraska Cornhuskers and defensive coordinator Erik Chinander walk (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images) /

The Nebraska football team continues to turn and face the strange as more ch-ch-ch-ch-changes were made official on Sunday. This time around it was the Huskers’ defensive coordinator, Erik Chinander, who lost his job. Chinander is out as DC just one week to the day that his former boss, Scott Frost, was shown the door by Nebraska AD Trev Alberts.

This move by Interim Head Coach Mickey Joseph was expected after rumors of Chinander’s firing start circulating late Saturday night and strengthened on Sunday morning. The announcement on Sunday afternoon is interesting if only because right after the game on Saturday, Joseph said he didn’t “see” making any coaching changes. He did add that if he saw something on film later, he might change his tune.

It appears something stood out now that Chinander is gone and Special Teams Coordinator has been named the new defensive coordinator.

It’s not entirely clear what stood out for the Nebraska football coach that wasn’t obvious on Saturday. Against the Sooners, the Huskers allowed 49 points and 580 total yards of offense. That comes one week after allowing 45 points and 642 yards to a Georgia Southern team that lost to UAB this week.

Under Chinander this season, the Nebraska football team is ranked 127th in the country in defensive efficiency. That puts them ahead of just Northern Illinois, North Texas, Charlotte, and Florida International nationally.

In 2021, the Huskers had managed to post numbers that made them the 26th-ranked team in the country in defensive efficiency. While Chinander’s unit had seen steady improvement since they finished 82nd in the country in 2018, things seemed to bottom out during a season that was well known to be make-or-break for Frost and the assistants that survived a purge of the offensive staff towards the end of last year.

It seemed apparent early on that there was an uneasy peace between Joseph and Chinander when the former Huskers quarterback ascended to Interim Head Coach as one of the first changes he announced was that there were would be more tackling in practice.

What hasn’t been announced just yet is what happens to the Nebraska football special teams unit. Is Busch doing double-duty, or will one of the analysts or GAs that will be expected to replace Chinander on the coaching roster take over Busch’s former duties?