On his monthly radio program Monday night, Nebraska Athletic Director Bill Moos praised two recent hires by NU football coach Scott Frost.
Moos said he was glad NU was able to rehire Mike Dawson — who coached defensive line under Frost in 2018 — to oversee the outside linebackers in 2020. Dawson spent last season with the NFL’s Giants, in part to get a final year of professional coaching so he could qualify for the league’s pension plan.
“He’s a tremendous coach, good recruiter,” Moos said on the Husker Sports Network. NU's AD is hands off when it comes coaches hiring their assistant coaches.
Moos knows new offensive coordinator Matt Lubick through his son, Bo, who played at Arizona State while Lubick was an assistant coach under Dennis Erickson. Moos said Lubick’s dad, Sonny, is “a jewel of a guy” who once coached at Montana State and recruited one of Moos’ current administrators at Nebraska, John Johnson.
Lubick and Frost worked together for three seasons at Oregon and have remained close friends. Lubick consulted for NU last season as he worked for a bank in Fort Collins, Colorado.
“It’s so important for Scott to have somebody who sees things the same way he does,” Moos said. “Whether it’s right or wrong or whatever, they have to be on the same page. I know there were some concerns by some — and Scott being one — that we were just a little off-kilter some… maybe a delay, or the right playcall or formation. It’s not easy to have someone who really knows what’s happening. I know, with other coaches I’ve worked with, it’s same head coach, but it’s good combos and bad combos, and usually the scoreboard reflects it.”
Nebraska improved by one win — from 4-8 in 2018 to 5-7 in 2019 — but the offense scored fewer points and gained fewer yards per game last season.
Matt Lubick’s decision to leave college coaching for a year was similar, Moos said, to a decision Moos made to stay out of college administration for a few years between the Oregon and Washington State. Moos called his time out of the industry a “sabbatical.” Former Washington State coach Mike Leach was out coaching for four seasons, Moos said, and returned “better” than he was at Texas Tech.
More notes from Moos’ appearance on the Husker Sports Network:
» NU has selected its architect and contractor for the new football training facility and still expects to break ground in late spring/early summer 2020, presuming the fundraising, Moos said, is all in place.
» Nebraska is opening its new Francis Allen gymnastics training facility in "ten to 14 days." The facility is late in opening because of equipment delays, Moos said. The building itself is ready.
» The Nebraska men’s basketball team has played hard despite not winning, and he likes NU’s chances to beat Michigan Tuesday night. The Huskers have their next two games at home.
“We have a home court advantage and that’s happening in the Big Ten,” Moos said. “It’s going to be nice to get home for awhile.”
» NU women’s basketball coach Amy Williams is “really doing a great job” with a 15-5 team that’s on the NCAA bubble.
“I think we’re sitting good,” Moos said of Williams’ program.
» The 2020, 2021 and 2020 athletic calendar is where Moos “has my sights” to the entire athletic department doing well in competition. Nebraska has had its two lowest finishes in the Director’s Cup since Moos took over, and he has hired nine coaches.
» The early December signing period has “pleasantly surprised” Moos with its effectiveness. The majority of players nationwide sign in December; in the 2020 cycle, NU has signed 23 players in December and may only sign a handful more next week.
“I’m glad we went that way,” Moos said.
» Tickets for the April 18 spring game go on sale to the general public Feb. 5. Season-ticket renewal response has been good.
“People know it’s about to happen,” Moos said, who noted NU is better position to a “good, tough schedule” in 2020 because it’ll be Frost’s third year.
» Moos has just returned from the NCAA convention in California and a couple donor events in the area, as well. He heads to Naples, Florida, later this week. At the NCAA event, Moos was able to see the NCAA’s “Top 10” ceremony honoring the best student-athletes in college sports. NU gymnast Anton Stephenson was part of the ten.
Photos: Nebraska football's Super Bowl streak