I can't say with confidence that one of Nebraska football's two new defensive analysts took in a a taping of Inside the Actor's Studio while coaching at Pace University, but I can say with confidence that it's the first thing I though of when I learned one of the new analysts had a one-season stint at Pace, where the show is taped. To be honest, I was shocked to learn Pace, a university with its main location in the heart of New York City, sponsored a football team but indeed it does. The university teams are called the Setters, naturally.
Bobby Maffei was the Setters' wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator in 2014. He is now one of two new defensive analysts listed on the Huskers' staff along with former New York Giants linebackers coach Bill McGovern. The Lincoln Journal Star first reported the additions.
Maffei has had an interesting rise up the coaching ranks. A Connecticut native, he graduated from Nebraska in 2011 after spending five seasons as a student assistant with the Huskers football program. His first job was as the director of football operations at Central Connecticut State, but by year two he was an on-field coach with the Blue Devils. After three seasons at CCSU and one at Pace, Maffei joined the Temple staff as a graduate assistant working with the defense for two years under now Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule. Maffei also did a two-year stint with Rhule at Baylor in 2017–18, which sandwiched a year (2016) coaching the cornerbacks at Tennessee Tech under head coach Watson Brown, older brother to Mack Brown. In 2019, Maffei was the special teams coordinator at Richmond.
McGovern has a similarly East Coast-focused résumé. A defensive back at Holy Cross who corralled 24 career interceptions, then a I-AA record, McGovern's first job was working with the freshman team at Penn in 1985. He then did two stints at his alma mater and two at UMass before joining Boston College as the DBs coach in 1994. McGovern held the same position at Pittsburgh from 1997 to 1999, but returned to Chestnut Hill in 2000. He would spend the next 13 seasons coaching the Eagles' linebackers under three different head coaches, eventually becoming the defensive coordinator. Future NFL stars Mark Herzlich and Luke Kuechly, Missouri and Ohio natives respectively, played for McGovern who was considered one of Boston College's most effective recruiters.
In 2013, McGovern joined Chip Kelly's Philadelphia staff, where he spent three seasons, before coaching the New York Giants' linebackers from 2016 to 2019. Perhaps most notably for his current role, McGovern coached with Nebraska outside linebackers coach Mike Dawson at Boston College, Philadelphia and New York.
The addition of Maffei and McGovern gives the Huskers' six analysts on staff, joining Mike Cassano, Dustin Haines and Frank Verducci (all offense) and offseason-hire Jonathan Rutledge (special teams).
The Grab Bag
- Nebraska has also added a punter from Australia, which, like adding analysts is very on-trend.
- Derek Peterson looks at a surprising run on commitments across the country given the lockdown on in-person recruiting.
- Corey McKeon joins Jay Moore for the latest Moore To It podcast.
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