Nebraska has hired one of its own to run the athletic department.
The university announced Wednesday morning that Trev Alberts, a former Nebraska All-American who went on to be a first-round NFL draft choice, has been named the school’s new athletic director. Alberts, 50, replaces Bill Moos, who somewhat abruptly retired late last month.
Alberts, a 2015 College Football Hall of Fame inductee, spent the last 12 years as the athletic director at Nebraska-Omaha, overseeing the school’s transition from Division II to Division I in 2015-16. That included the decision to drop football in 2011. Before landing at UNO, Alberts spent several years as a college football analyst, including a stint at ESPN.
On the field, Alberts was a star linebacker for the Huskers from 1990 to 1993. As a senior, Alberts was a consensus All-American and won the Butkus Award after registering 96 tackles, 21 tackles for loss and 15 sacks. From there he was selected fifth overall in the 1994 NFL draft by the Indianapolis Colts, but injuries limited him to only three professional seasons.
Now back in Lincoln, Alberts inherits a Huskers athletic department in a much different position than it was when he was a player back in the 90’s.
"It is such a tremendous honor to have this opportunity to lead Husker athletics," Alberts said in a statement. "UNL has incredibly talented coaches and student-athletes, and a fan base like no other program in the country. The future of Big Red is bright. I can't wait to join the Husker athletics team and get going."
Alberts is now Nebraska’s fourth athletic director since it joined the Big Ten back in 2011, following Tom Osborne, Shawn Eichorst and Moos.
Nebraska football is struggling
When Alberts was putting on the pads, Nebraska was a perennial power in the Big Eight Conference under the legendary Osborne, winning three national titles. But things have gone downhill since Osborne retired after the 1997 season.
Frank Solich (who, coincidentally, retired from his position at Ohio University earlier Wednesday) succeeded Osborne and continued Nebraska’s winning ways — but not to the level the Huskers were accustomed to. Solich went 58-19 in six seasons, but was fired after the 2003 season. From there, the school cycled through Bill Callahan, Bo Pelini and Mike Riley before the current head coach, Scott Frost, was brought in by Moos.
Frost, himself a former Huskers star, was expected to revitalize the Nebraska football program, which has struggled to establish any sort of presence within the Big Ten. Frost had a spectacular two-year run at UCF, but has been unable to get things going in Lincoln.
In Frost's three years on the job, Nebraska has a 12-20 overall record with just a 9-17 mark in Big Ten play. They started 0-6 in 2018 before winning four of six down the stretch to finish 4-8. In 2019, the Huskers started 4-2, but lost five of six to close the season with a 5-7 record and miss the postseason yet again. And in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, Nebraska missed a bowl for the fourth straight season by finishing with a 3-5 record.
Back in April, Moos said that "eight or nine wins" is a realistic expectation for the football team in 2021. The pressure is on for Frost, especially with the man who hired him — Moos — no longer in the fold.
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