LINCOLN — Tony Tuioti, Nebraska’s new defensive line coach, checked off all the boxes.

Experience in a 3-4 defense? Yep. Recruiting acumen? Yep. An energetic fit for the Huskers’ relatively young staff? Yep.

NU coach Scott Frost, in officially announcing Tuioti’s hiring six days before spring football begins, seemed most intrigued by those ingredients when it came to replacing Mike Dawson, who left the Huskers two weeks ago to take a job with the NFL’s New York Giants.

“We are pleased to add Tony Tuioti to our coaching staff and look forward to having him and his family join us at Nebraska,” Frost said in a press release. “Tony has been a key part of one of the top defenses in the country the past two seasons at Cal. He will bring great energy to our staff, has a strong history of player development, and an impressive recruiting background.”

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Tuioti, 42, coached Cal’s defensive linemen in 2018 and the team’s outside linebackers in 2017. He signed a two-year contract with Nebraska worth an annual salary of $375,000, which is $100,000 less than Dawson made last season. It’s roughly $100,000 more, though, than the $276,500 Tuioti made at Cal last season, according to the USA Today assistant coaches salary database.

“I want to thank Coach Frost for the opportunity to be a part of the Nebraska football family,” Tuioti said in a press release. “I believe in what he is doing and the culture he is building at Nebraska and I am excited to be a part of it.”

Under California coach Justin Wilcox — who runs an aggressive 3-4 defense — Tuioti helped produce the Pac-12’s No. 3 total defense (317.2 yards per game) and No. 3 scoring defense (20.4 points per game). Both figures were better than Nebraska’s defensive performance in the 3-4. The Golden Bears also ranked fourth in the conference with 31 sacks and sixth with 77 tackles for loss.

In 2017, he coached linebackers at Cal, which made a dramatic improvement on defense in Wilcox’s first year. Ben Moos, the son of NU Athletic Director Bill Moos, is a redshirt sophomore on the Golden Bears roster.

“Phenomenal coach and mentor to the entire group,” Ben Moos said via text of Tuioti. “Good person, bright mind and very talented recruiter.”

In 2016, Tuioti was Michigan’s director of player personnel — a recruiting role heavily involved in evaluation, organization and logistics for recruiting visits. He served in a similar role at Hawaii, where he was a four-year letterwinner from 1996-99. He was a graduate assistant at Hawaii for two years, director of player personnel in 2008 and 2009 and a position coach for four seasons, 2010-13, before working two seasons for the NFL’s Cleveland Browns as a quality control defensive line assistant.

In his Cal biography, Tuioti lists two hometowns — Santa Ana, California, and Laie, Hawaii. He married a Hawaii volleyball player, Keala Nihipali, and they have seven children — three daughters, Teisa, Teiyana and Teinia, and four sons, Teivis, Teilor, Teitum and Teimana.

Also on Tuesday, Nebraska announced the addition of Ryan Feder as a defensive graduate assistant. Feder most recently worked with the Green Bay Packers as a football technology analyst.

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