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UNC Announces Defensive Coaching Hire

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Larry Fedora officially announced the hire of former Nebraska defensive coordinator John Papuchis as a member of the UNC defensive coaching staff. Inside Carolina first reported the hire on January 22nd.

Via GoHeels.

University of North Carolina head coach Larry Fedora announced Monday that John Papuchis (pronounced puh-POO-chis) has been hired as a defensive assistant coach.  Papuchis was most recently on Nebraska’s staff from 2008-14, including the last three as the Huskers’ defensive coordinator.

“I’m excited to add John to our staff,” said head coach Larry Fedora.  “He has quickly earned a reputation as an outstanding teacher and recruiter.  John has worked at some of the top programs in the country and his vision for success for our student-athletes mirrors the goals we have at UNC.”

Papuchis has made a quick rise through the coaching ranks. The 36-year-old was the fourth-youngest defensive coordinator in the country and the youngest solo defensive coordinator when he was promoted to the position at Nebraska in 2012.   Prior to joining Bo Pelini’s Nebraska staff in 2008, he worked at LSU under Nick Saban from 2004-07, and was a graduate assistant at Kansas from 2001-03.

“I’m looking forward to working with Coach Fedora and Coach Chizik to continue to build this program and achieve the type of success both on and off the field that our fans will be proud of,” said Papuchis.  “Carolina has everything a young man would want – academically, athletically and socially – and I’m thankful for this opportunity.

With Gene Chizik taking over for as UNC's top defensive coach following one of the worst defensive seasons in Tar Heel football history, it was widely expected some staff changes would follow. The hire of Pupuchis is one such move and it stands to reasons there may be others. Once the dust has cleared from National Signing Day on Wednesday additional shakeups to the staff would not be surprising.

There is no indication which position group or area Papuchis will handle.