middle name might be devin [247]

Hello: Shaun Nua, Defensive Line Coach Comment Count

Brian January 17th, 2019 at 1:02 PM

Michigan's filled their final hole on the defensive side of the ball:

This was said to be official yesterday but as Ben McDaniels seems to be finding out, better not to count those chickens before they've hatched twitter eggs.

[After the JUMP: the bio]

Nua was a DE at BYU in the early aughts and had a few years in the NFL after being drafted in the seventh round. He went back to his alma mater to GA for three years before landing the DL job at Navy, which he held for six years. He bumped up to Arizona State last year, and now lands at Michigan.

Nua continues a theme: youth. Michigan's added four assistants (pending McDaniels becoming official); all are in their 30s. Many of these guys are wild cards and Nua's no exception. Recruiting to Navy is a different world than recruiting to Michigan and it's tough to judge how he's developing guys when academy teams are operating from such a different POV than "did he get enough guys drafted and have good stats?" One season at ASU doesn't tell you much more, especially when it's year one of Herm.

Like Gattis, Nua is a guy who seems to be rapidly rising through the ranks. His somewhat extended Navy tenure could have been much shorter if he was inclined:

“Shaun is a great coach and an even greater person,” Niumatalolo said when contacted on Monday. “We are really going to miss Shaun. He will be very tough to replace.”

Nua briefly accepted the defensive line position at Virginia under head coach Bronco Mendenhall in December, 2015. That was when Niumatalolo was considering replacing Mendenhall at BYU.

After Niumatalolo turned down the BYU job and decided to remain at Navy, Nua changed his mind and also elected to stay in Annapolis.

“Shaun’s had offers almost every year he’s been here. We were very fortunate to keep him as long as we did,” Niumatalolo said. “Shaun felt this opportunity was too good to pass up. I wish him all the best and know he will do great things in his career.”

And he seems like a genuine dude:

Nua became choked up when contacted by The Capital on Monday morning and asked to discuss the decision to leave Navy for Arizona State. After taking a moment to compose himself, Nua said he will always cherish the time spent in Annapolis.

“This whole Navy experience has been nothing but a blessing to my life. This is a really, really special place, one I will never forget,” he said. “They talk about the Navy family and it is so true. All the coaches here took me under their wing and treated me like a brother. I felt like a father figure to all these incredible players I got to coach. I will forever be grateful for my time at Navy.”

Nua, a native of Pago Pago, should help Michigan recruit Pacific Islanders amongst others to their DL. And if there's anything you learn with six years at Navy it's how to get your guys technique up to compensate for their general lack of size. Seems like a good bet. Another good bet: in five years he'll be a better coach than Greg Mattison.


Malum In Se

January 17th, 2019 at 1:12 PM ^

The positive buzz of the coaching hires has almost washed away the bitter memories of the end of last season.  Hope might be the first step on the road to disappointment, but it springs eternal.  


January 17th, 2019 at 3:59 PM ^

Lets not pretend that Michigan football isn't constantly buzzing with positivity every offseason. Hasn't reflected on the field yet, so consider me still skeptical.

The Gattis hire seems like a roll of the dice that could bring some good upside. Nua feels like a total shot in the dark with little reason to believe this will bring improvement.


January 17th, 2019 at 4:32 PM ^

LOL! BULLSHIT! You and I, specifically, have been through this before. You also claimed that everybody knew 2017 was going to be a rebuilding year and that was bullshit too! Everybody was saying we'd "reload not rebuild" and that we were now on par with Ohio State.

It's fucking embarrassing that clowns like you try to repaint the past to make things appear rosier.


January 17th, 2019 at 5:17 PM ^

I've been here for a decade. Calling people out on their bullshit is not trolling.

Did you know that it's possible to have criticisms of Michigan football while still being a fan? We all want Michigan to be better but that doesn't mean that every time a coach scratches his ass you need to commend him on what a great job he has done.

Step outside the echo chamber sometime.


January 17th, 2019 at 10:27 PM ^

It looks like he claimed that a majority of posters thought Michigan would go somewhere between 6-6 and 8-4.  That's close to what I remember as well.  I don't know if a majority claimed those results, but I remember a large number who predicted losses to ND, Wisconsin, Penn State, MSU and Ohio State.


January 18th, 2019 at 2:19 AM ^

Kurpit is being a jerk because he has suppressed psychological trauma. It's not his fault. It is probably from when he was a child. The best way to help him is to be kind and sensitive to his feelings. Remember, saying the wrong thing could cause him to be triggered and become "unevenly keeled" as it were.


January 18th, 2019 at 6:43 AM ^

Everyone specifically talked about 17 being a rebuilding year because of the young receivers, questions about qb, and the OL. You're being a troll. Brian write last off season that the team would go as far as the offense of line would take them. It was obvious that the offensive line could not take them very far this past year.


January 18th, 2019 at 7:44 AM ^

Let's be honest here, we've won 10 games in three of the last four years.  When was the last time that happened?  Bo?  What you're really saying is that hasn't translated into us beating OSU yet.  JH brought in DB which was highly successful.  JH brought in Warriner which was highly successful.  JH brought in Moore & Washington whom were highly successful recruiters.  JH has reeled in three top 10 recruiting classes in four years which also hasn't happened this decade.  So, I think there have been lots of positives that have given us results on the field.  They just haven't made us better than OSU yet, which is the current place holder of what we need to do in order to win our division and likely our conference as well as have a chance at a playoff berth. 

East Quad

January 17th, 2019 at 2:02 PM ^

I vaguely remember this.  Thanks for the geography refresher.

American Samoa is a group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean that lie about halfway between Hawaii and New Zealand and about 100km east of the island country of Samoa, which is part of the same archipelago, ethnicity and culture.American Samoa is an unincorporated territory of the United States of America.

American Samoa - Wikitravel



Jeff M

January 17th, 2019 at 1:16 PM ^

He was the lead recruiter for a 4 star DE that ASU got out of California, who was purportedly choosing between ASU and USC. So, at least a bit of evidence that he can 'croot as well as coach.


January 17th, 2019 at 1:17 PM ^

"Another good bet: in five years he'll be a better coach than Greg Mattison."

We'll see, but even if he's just as good, that's good.


January 17th, 2019 at 1:26 PM ^

I read that as Brian taking a bit of a shot at Mattison perhaps insinuating that maybe he was a product of the talent in the program rather than coaching? Idk i could be super off base on this


Edit: ahhh i think it was an age comment. Disregard my nonsense 


January 17th, 2019 at 1:31 PM ^

"Another good bet: in five years he'll be a better coach than Greg Mattison."

An odd and unlikely prediction. Once we become bitter we can no longer accurately assess our prior coaches? What is there from Nua's past that leads us to believe that in 5 years he'll be a better coach than Mattison? I'd love for that prediction to be correct but reeks of super hot mlive take prediction with a side of sour grapes. We're better than that.

(edit: if it was merely a reference to the fact that in 5 years one is coaching and the other isn't...therefore a better coach by default...then I retract my prior statement and instead say "ok".)