Mark Whipple has resurfaced at Nebraska in the same job under head football coach Scott Frost, just one day after leaving as offensive coordinator at Pittsburgh.
Whipple, 64, announced his retirement on Tuesday after his third season as head coach at Pitt, where he coached Heisman Trophy contender Kenny Pickett.
In 2021, the Panthers were ranked third in scoring and sixth in passing nationally. Pickett, Pitt’s first Heisman Trophy finalist since 2003, threw for 4,319 yards and an ACC-record 42 touchdowns this season. With 81 touchdown passes, he eclipsed Dan Marino’s team record for career touchdown passes.
Whipple previously served as the head coach at UMass for five years and has coached quarterbacks in both the NFL and college.
Frost also announced the hire of Donovan Raiola, an assistant offensive line coach with the Chicago Bears, as the Huskers’ offensive line coach.
Frost stated in a statement released Wednesday, “We are excited to add Mark Whipple and Donovan Raiola to our offensive staff.” “Mark has four decades of coaching experience and brings a long record of offensive success to Nebraska. … I am confident their addition will have a positive impact on the young men in our programme and the success of our offence .”
Due to offensive inconsistencies, the Cornhuskers finished 3-7 this season, and Frost fired four offensive assistants, including offensive coordinator/wide receivers coach Matt Lubick.
Greg Austin, the offensive line coach and run game coordinator, Ryan Held, the running backs coach, and Mario Verduzco, the quarterbacks coach, were all fired.
Frost acknowledged last month that stepping aside and handing the offence over to someone fresh will be difficult for him, but that it is important.
“There’s things about being coach at Nebraska that I haven’t been able to enjoy because of all the time I’ve been spending trying to fix problems and dig ourselves out of a hole and get the team better,” Frost said last month. “I’ve spent a lot of time offensively, too. Not that I didn’t have the right guys. I can’t say enough good about them. But I need to really trust somebody. I’ll still be involved. That will take a lot off my plate and I think help me be better in some other areas.”