Coming off 9-4 season, Cornhuskers 'have a lot of work to do' before they visit Oregon for Sept. 9 rematch with Ducks

COURTESY: UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA  - MIKE RILEYWhen Nebraska begins spring football on March 4, there will be a string of new faces on the defensive side of the coaching staff.

It's the result of a major shakeup by coach Mike Riley, which included the firing of long-time aides Mark Banker and Bruce Read.

The Cornhuskers wound up with three new defensive assistants — coordinator Bob Diaco, Bob Elliott (safeties) and Donte' Williams (cornerbacks).

"It's been hard," says Riley, set to begin his third season at the Nebraska helm. "It's been exciting. It feels like a breath of fresh air."

The Cornhuskers were 9-4 last season (7-0 at home); what was disappointing was the route they took to get there. They opened the season with seven straight victories and were ranked seventh in the country heading into a showdown with 11th-ranked Wisconsin at Madison. The Badgers won 23-17 in overtime.

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