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Former Husker RB coach Ryan Held finds landing spot

Former Husker RB coach Ryan Held finds landing spot

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Nebraska football practice, 8.11

Ryan Held (left) and Gabe Ervin (22) watch the action Aug. 11 during practice at Hawks Championship Center.

Steven M. Sipple, Parker Gabriel and Chris Basnett discuss a busy Wednesday for Husker football and chat Final Four volleyball.

Ryan Held has a new home. 

The former Nebraska running backs coach and recruiting coordinator, one of four offensive assistants fired by Scott Frost in November, was announced Tuesday morning as the new offensive coordinator at North Alabama. 

Held, a Kansas City, Missouri, native, will also serve as associate head coach to Chris Willis, who will be entering his sixth year in charge of the FCS program. 

North Alabama plays in the Big South Conference. 

Held spent the past six seasons with Frost, four at Nebraska and 2016-17 at Central Florida. He had spent his career to that point, though, climbing through the ranks of junior college and Division II coaching. 

He is also a University of Nebraska grad, having played for Tom Osborne in the 1990s as a walk-on. 

"Ryan has worn a lot of different hats during his career, from the junior college to FBS levels. He has also been a head coach, called plays, and is a highly regarded recruiter," Willis said in a school news release. "He fits our staff, where our guys don't just coach a position but fill a lot of different roles. He has been there and done that. He is someone we feel we can turn the offense over to and know he can do that." 

Held will also reunite with at least one familiar face at UNA. The school's wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator is Colby Ellis, who spent 2018-19 as an offensive graduate assistant at Nebraska. 

Contact the writer at or 402-473-7439. On Twitter @HuskerExtraPG.


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Parker joined the Journal Star as the University of Nebraska football beat writer in August 2017. He previously covered Montana State athletics for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2012.

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