Nebraska has fired athletic director Shawn Eichorst, the school announced Thursday. The search for a new athletic director begins immediately.
“Shawn has led Nebraska Athletics in many positive ways, but those efforts have not translated into on-field performance,” Chancellor Ronnie Green said in an official release. “Our fans and our student-athletes deserve leadership that drives the highest levels of competitiveness, as well as excellence across all facets of Husker Athletics.”
Nebraska has struggled in its third season led by coach Mike Riley. After going 9-4 last season, the Huskers are only 1-2 this season. After beating Arkansas State 43-36, the Huskers have lost to Oregon, 42-35, and then had a brutal loss to Northern Illinois of the Mid-American Conference, 21-17.
Nebraska fires AD Shawn Eichorst
— Nebraska Today (@NebToday) September 21, 2017
Eichorst joined the Huskers in October 2012. He still has around $1.7 million remaining on his contract that ran through June 2019. Green and Nebraska president Hank Bounds decided on September 21 that they would find a new athletic director. Bounds and Green met with Eichorst the same day. Bounds and Green also told coaches of the decision that day.
“While I am deeply disappointed in the decision today, I am grateful for the wonderful years that my family and I have spent at Nebraska,” Eichorst said in a statement. “I am proud of how our student-athletes, coaches and staff represented this great university and state, and I am confident that the future is bright for Nebraska Athletics.”
According to the school’s release, the chancellor will “reach out” to stakeholders knowledgeable of Huskers athletics and others who have led other successful programs.
“Winning can and often does happen in concert with well-run, quality college programs that work to ensure the success of the student,” Green said. “That’s our expectation. We take pride here in doing things right and doing the right thing, and that won’t change. This is not an either-or equation. We can and should win in that kind of environment.”
During the team’s slow start this season, prominent figures have spoken out in frustration. As the offense struggled against Northern Illinois, Nebraska great Tommie Frazier tweeted his criticism. Frazier later said firing Riley “isn’t the answer” right now.
That was one of the worst first half of a football game I have ever seen by an offense. When will the leader step up and make a play.
— Tommie Frazier (@TouchdownTommie) September 16, 2017
In 2017, Riley and the Huskers started 7-0 and got to No. 7 in the rankings. Since then, Nebraska is 3-6.
Nebraska celebrity fan Larry The Cable Guy called for Eichorst’s firing after the loss to Northern Illinois.
Larry The Cable Guy seems to be enjoying Thursday’s news of Eichorst’s firing.
“We just began in restoring the order of ‘N,'” he tweeted Thursday afternoon.
If you don't live in Nebraska you won't get this tweet but 🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉 . We just began in restoring the order of "N". Thanks RG.
— Larry The Cable Guy (@GitRDoneLarry) September 21, 2017