New Rutgers head coach Chris Ash has been hard at work putting together his first ever coaching staff, and on Wednesday afternoon, he announced that he’d be bringing on Northern Illinois defensive coordinator Jay Niemann to take over the same position with the Scarlet Knights.
— Rutgers Football (@RFootball) December 30, 2015
“Jay will be a great addition to our coaching staff as defensive coordinator,” said Ash in a statement, per the school’s official athletic site. “Jay and I have known each other for over 20 years and I have always admired his approach to coaching. Jay and I share a defensive philosophy. It will be a defense built on effort, fundamentals, execution and toughness.”
Niemann brings over 25 years of coaching experience to Rutgers, including the last five as the defensive coordinator at Northern Illinois. He spent six seasons as the head coach at Simpson College and as the defensive coordinator during Ash’s playing days at Drake.
While Niemann was at Northern Illinois, the Huskies won the Mid-American Conference West Division in each of the past five years with three league titles. His defenses have finished inside the conference’s top 5 in three of the last five years, including a No. 2 spot in 2012 that featured a unit which surrendered just 19.9 points per game.