Mickey Joseph Becomes Nebraska’s First Black Head Coach In School History

Mickey Joseph Becomes Nebraska’s First Black Head Coach In School History

Mickey Joseph on Nebraska sideline

According to a story by David Suggs in Sporting News, Mickey Joseph became Nebraska’s first Black head coach in any sport. He is currently the interim head coach for Nebraska football.

Nebraska shook up the college football world early Sunday afternoon, firing head coach Scott Frost after yet another abysmal loss, this time to Sun Belt’s Georgia Southern. The loss was unacceptable and it turned into the final nail in the coffin for Frost. His lack of success in close games — each of the Cornhuskers last 13 losses were by less than 10 points — played a pivotal role in his dismissal.

For all the programs’ toils over the course of Frost’s tenure, it’s a new era in Lincoln. And that era will be led by Mickey Joseph. Joseph, 54, was named interim head coach on Sunday. The 54-year-old made a little history with his appointment, too; Joseph is the first Black head coach in Nebraska sports history.

With that, here’s everything you need to know about Nebraska’s new tactician, a person whose impact on the sports landscape in Lincoln will go far beyond the gridiron.

Who is Mickey Joseph?

Despite only recently joining Frost’s staff, Joseph has a bit of history with the city of Lincoln. He was featured as a dual-threat quarterback at the school from 1988-1991, combining for 21 touchdowns (11 passing, 10 rushing) in 1990. Joseph was a key piece in Tom Osborne’s offense. And Osborne’s football philosophy has continued to shine through over the course of his protege’s coaching career.

Joseph’s coaching journey has taken him to a handful of historically black colleges and universities, including Alcorn State and Grambling State, as well as LSU. In fact, Joseph was the Tigers’ wide receiver coach from 2017-2021. He oversaw the development of future NFL stars Justin Jefferson and Ja’Marr Chase.

In fact, Joseph played a leading role in bringing Chase to Baton Rouge, per Chase’s father. “Mickey was very vital in Ja’Marr’s recruitment,” said Jimmy Chase, per Rivals. “He was the only one who knew how to understand Ja’Marr and how Ja’Marr operates. With Ja’Marr being a high-profile player, he was not your normal high school player. Ja’Marr didn’t like all of the attention and wasn’t crazy about being harassed.

Mickey took it slow with him and didn’t really talk about football or LSU all the time. That won Ja’Marr over. Ja’Marr let his guard down with Mickey and the rest is history — even ‘till today.

Joseph’s patience paid dividends when LSU captured the national championship in 2019. And despite joining a Nebraska program that has been in derelict condition over the past few seasons, Joseph’s arrival has helped the Cornhuskers attract a different type of prospect; Nebraska landed LSU transfer Trey Palmer prior to the 2022 season. He also helped the program land wideouts DeColdest Crawford and Omarion Miller (Class of 2023), among others.

“He’s like a father,” Palmer said, per The Athletic. “He looks at me like his own. So to have somebody like that in my life, on the field, and off the field, is very good.”