Jue. Feb 9th, 2023

The Nebraska Cornhuskers have a new head football coach, former Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule.

Rhule becomes the last successful college coach to fail at the NFL level, only to return to the college level. Nebraska and Rhule have officially agreed to the terms of an eight-year contract, the school announced Saturday.

Rhule, 47, was fired midseason by the Panthers.

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Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule smiles during the first half of an NFL preseason game against the Buffalo Bills on Friday, Aug. 26, 2022, in Charlotte, NC
(AP Photo/Jacob Kupferman)

An ESPN report revealed Friday that Nebraska was working to finalize a deal with Rhule.

Nebraska fired head coach Scott Frost in September after an embarrassing loss to Georgia Southern.

One of eight Football Bowl Subdivision programs with at least 900 wins, but more than 20 years after its 1990s heyday, Nebraska is pinning its hopes on Rhule to replicate its success at its previous two collegiate stops.

Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule speaks to officials during the second quarter of a game against the San Francisco 49ers at Bank of America Stadium on October 9, 2022 in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule speaks to officials during the second quarter of a game against the San Francisco 49ers at Bank of America Stadium on October 9, 2022 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
(Eakin Howard/Getty Images)

Rhule successfully turned around Temple’s and Baylor’s respective football programs in relatively short periods of time.

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Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper signed Rhule to a long-term contract in 2020, but Rhule’s college success never translated into the NFL, and he went 11-27 as Carolina’s head coach.

He was only 2 1/2 years into his seven-year deal with the Panthers when he left. He had about $40 million left on his $62 million contract.

Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule watches the game against the Minnesota Vikings during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 17, 2021, in Charlotte, NC

Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule watches the game against the Minnesota Vikings during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 17, 2021, in Charlotte, NC
(AP Photo/Jacob Kupferman)

The contract made Rhule the sixth-highest-paid coach in the NFL when he signed in 2020, according to Forbes.

Nebraska did not release the terms of Rhule’s contract, but since Nebraska is a public university, details of the deal will likely be released at a later date. It’s important to note that Rhule’s contract with the Panthers is dollar-for-dollar, based on what he would earn on a new job.

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Rhule will be introduced at a news conference on Monday.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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