LINCOLN, Neb. -- University of Nebraska Football Coach Frank Solich met with the team, then issued a release announcing changes in his coaching staff on Monday.
"We are taking the necessary steps to get this program turned back around," Solich said. "The University of Nebraska has a high standard of excellence and we will do whatever it takes to maintain that high standard.
"After full evaluations, there are several immediate changes that will be made on our coaching staff. In addition, I have evaluated my role and I will no longer serve as offensive coordinator. Therefore, I will name an offensive coordinator in the near future."
Solich said he will move as efficiently as possible in filling the offensive coordinator position. "A final decision has not been made, but there are definitely qualified candidates here at Nebraska as well as from outside the program that we might consider. Delegating the duties of offensive coordinator will allow me the time to concentrate more on recruiting, spend more time with players and handle other administrative duties that go along with being head coach."
Solich said that defensive coordinator Craig Bohl, rush ends coach Nelson Barnes and secondary coach George Darlington have been removed from their coaching responsibilities, effective immediately.
Solich said the coaching decisions were not easy to make. "I appreciate that these coaches have dedicated themselves to this profession and this program, but we feel we need to move forward at this time."
"Hiring a defensive coordinator will take first priority. We are looking for a person who is able to coordinate all phases of the defense. We hope to fill this position quickly, but we will go through a thorough process of identifying the best person available. After hiring a defensive coordinator, we will fill the other two positions with coaches who are able to implement the coordinator?s style, schemes and game plans."
Solich said defensive line coach Jeff Jamrog and graduate assistant Jimmy Burrow will handle the defensive gameplan for the upcoming bowl game. Jamrog will coach the line and linebackers, while Burrow will coach the defensive backs, a position he has assisted with the past two seasons. Both Burrow and fellow graduate assistant coach Tim Albin have assumed recruiting duties until all coaching decisions are finalized.
The University will honor all terms of the affected coaches? employment contracts, which remain in effect until June 30, 2004.
In preparations for the Huskers? 34th consecutive bowl appearance, the team will lift on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The Huskers will run on Tuesday and Thursday and will have full practices on Friday and Saturday. Coach Solich and players will be available for interviews following Tuesday?s running session.