University of Nebraska Head Football Coach Mike Riley announced Tuesday the hiring of Brian Stewart as the Huskers’ defensive backs coach. Stewart brings defensive coordinator experience at both the college and professional levels to the Husker staff. Stewart comes to Nebraska after spending the past three seasons as the defensive coordinator and secondary coach at the University of Maryland. His stop at Maryland continued an impressive coaching resume that includes seven years as a defensive coordinator—five years in college football and two in the National Football League. Stewart also has 15 years of tutoring defensive backs on his coaching resume.
“I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the Nebraska football program,” Stewart said. “The opportunity to coach at Nebraska is awesome. My first impression is ‘wow’. From the weight room to walking down the hallway and seeing the national championship trophies, Nebraska is what you think it is…a football powerhouse. The most important thing for me in my coaching career is my family. Coach Riley and his staff have been together so long, and you can just see the loyalty and trust. I’m proud to be a part of that.”
Riley said adding another experienced coach to his staff will provide excellent leadership to a veteran group of Nebraska defensive backs.
“Brian Stewart brings a record of success in both the collegiate and professional ranks and will be a great fit at the University of Nebraska,” Riley said. “He has experience coaching and recruiting in all parts of the country, most recently with experience in the Big Ten Conference. We look forward to Brian getting started with our defensive staff and our secondary.”
The 50-year old Stewart completes a Nebraska defensive staff that includes four coaches who all have professional coaching or playing experience. The defensive staff has three coaches with coordinator experience, including Stewart, defensive coordinator Mark Banker and defensive line coach Hank Hughes. Both Stewart and Banker have served as defensive coordinators in both college and the National Football League.
In his three seasons on the Maryland staff, Stewart helped the Terrapins to a pair of bowl appearances. The attacking Terrapin defense tallied more than 30 sacks each of the past two seasons.
Stewart re-joined the college ranks as the defensive coordinator at the University of Houston in 2010 and 2011. Stewart helped the Cougars to a 13-1 record and No. 14 final national ranking in 2011.
He spent the previous eight years in the NFL, including a two-year stint as the Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator in 2007 and 2008. As the Cowboys’ defense coordinator, Stewart guided Dallas to two top-10 rankings in fewest yards allowed. He helped the Cowboys to a 13-3 record and NFC East divisional title in 2007.
Stewart also served as an assistant coach with the Philadelphia Eagles (2009), San Diego Chargers (2004-06) and the Houston Texas (2002-03). Each of the teams Stewart coached in his final six NFL seasons won at least nine games, including three division champions and four playoff teams. During his time in the professional ranks, Stewart helped 14 players make Pro Bowl appearances.
Before his stint in the National Football League, Stewart had college assistant coaching stops at Syracuse, Missouri, San Jose State, Northern Arizona and Cal Poly. A California native, Stewart played defensive back at Santa Monica City College and Northern Arizona.
Riley also announced that Jon Clark has joined the Nebraska staff as a defensive graduate assistant coach. Clark comes to Nebraska after one season as the secondary coach at East Texas Baptist University. Clark also served as the defensive coordinator at Canyon State Academy and was a student assistant coach for Arizona State. Clark was a letterwinner for the Sun Devil defense as a player.