The former Oregon State head coach will return to Corvallis to be an assistant coach on Jonathan Smith's staff, the team announced Thursday. Riley will be an assistant on new coach Jonathan Smith's staff. Riley compiled a 93-80 record over 14 seasons as Oregon State head coach.
"Current and former players thriving in the National Football League and in life are proof of Coach Riley's tremendous ability to recruit outstanding young men", Smith said. "He understands what it takes to win in this (Pac-12) conference, and how to evaluate and develop student-athletes". He brought Smith in as a walk-on quarterback in 1997, and Smith would go on to become the Beavers' starting quarterback from 1998-2001, which included the 2000 Fiesta Bowl season.
Smith, a former Beavers' quarterback, was a graduate assistant at Oregon State under Riley in 2003.
Head football coach Mike Riley has been fired from Nebraska after the school's worst final record since 1961, athletic director Bill Moos announced Saturday. "I could do the secondary - that's where I spent half my career".
Also returning to Oregon State is Dan Van De Riet, who will be the Beavers' chief of staff/director of football operations. He served in the same role at Nebraska.
Riley's hire at Oregon State means his buyout from Nebraska will be mitigated, but unlikely by much.
In an interview with the Omaha World-Herald after his November 25 firing, Riley said he wouldn't mind being on a coaching staff as a secondary or quarterbacks coach, saying that he still felt young and had the energy to do it. Riley was due $6.63 million from December 1 through the remaining 39 months of his contract at Nebraska, a monthly cut of $170,000.