By Charles Chaney BCTG Sports Editor
The former Butler head coach was announced Friday as the new Nebraska-Kearney defense coordinator.
Schaffner, who was the head coach of Butler Community College for seven seasons and helped the Grizzlies remain one of the best teams in junior college football. Prior to that, he was Troy Morrell’s assistant for 10 years and helped the Grizzlies win multiple national championships during his time in El Dorado.
While at Butler, Schaffner won 146 games, two national championships and nine conference championships. He helped Butler win seven regional championships during his tenure. In seven seasons, Schaffner has led Butler to a 44-21 record (0.677 winning percent). He helped Butler win two bowl games, the 2018 and 2019 Midwest Classic Bowl. His 44 wins ranks among the third all-time wins in Butler history. He is also third all-time in games coached for the Grizzlies.
Last season, Schaffner left Butler CC to become defensive coordinator at Idaho State, a Division I FCS school in Pocatello, Idaho. Schaffner watched the Bengals go 1-10 last year. His head coach, Charlie Rangel, resigned after one season, leading Schaffner to look for a job.
This is where Ryan Held comes in and fits Nebraska-Kearney.
Held was Butler’s one-season offensive coordinator in 2011 when the Grizzlies went 11-1 going into the national championship game. His defense coordinator at the time? Conductor.
Held, who has worked his way up the coaching ladder, was appointed UNK’s head coach on December 20 and has wasted little time assembling his staff.
Schaffner’s defense at Butler was among the best in the nation. In six of his 13 seasons as defensive coordinator, Schaffner’s defense has averaged fewer than 10 points per game, an amazing stat in today’s scoring collegiate game. In 2013, Butler allowed just 11.2 points per match – including five games in which the opponent scored seven points or fewer. During his tenure as Butler, he has seen more than 12 of his players go to the NFL. He has also coached three NJCAA National Player of the Year winners.
Before Butler, Schaffner was a coach at Eastern Arizona, a now-defunct NJCAA football school, where he served as the defensive coordinator. Before that, he was DC at Garden City for four seasons and helped the Broncbusters win 27 games. Prior to GCCC, he coached for a season at Ranger College, another now-defunct NJCAA program, in 2000. He also has coaching stints in the state of Northwest Missouri, Eastern New Mexico, and helped coach at the University of Esssex.