Northern Illinois taps Dave Doeren

DEKALB, Ill. -- Northern Illinois says it has hired Wisconsin defensive coordinator Dave Doeren as its new head football coach.

Doeren succeeds Jerry Kill, who was hired as Minnesota's coach eight days ago. He was introduced as the school's 21st head coach at a news conference Monday afternoon.

"I'm very fortunate to be walking into a place that has the pride and the success and the facilities and the expectations and the academic integrity that this university has," Doeren said. "I know [former coach Joe] Novak and Coach Kill and I know what they stand for. I'm very, very proud to stand on what they've created. I'm not walking into a rebuilding job."

A Badgers assistant since 2005, Doeren served as defensive coordinator and linebacker coach since 2008. A native of Shawnee Mission, Kan., he was a four-year football letter winner at Drake. He served as Drake's assistant coach before coaching stints at Southern California, Montana and Kansas.

Doeren will remain with the Badgers through the Rose Bowl presented by VIZIO.

"I felt like I was part of a five-year process to get them to that point and I want to finish that journey," he said. "I also feel like it's great publicity for this university and for our recruiting efforts to have a Rose Bowl coach on national television."

Northern Illinois (10-3) is preparing for next week's uDrove Humanitarian Bowl game in Boise, Idaho, against Fresno State. Linebackers coach Tom Matukewicz is serving as interim head coach for that game.

This year, Wisconsin was ranked 22nd nationally and third in the Big Ten in total defense. In 2009, Doeren's unit was 17th in the nation, giving up 305.7 yards per game.

Kill announced on Dec. 3 that he'd take over at Minnesota, setting off a scramble for a replacement.

"Eight days ago we also began the process of trying to find our next head coach," Northern Illinois athletic director Jeff Compher said. "The process has been swift, thorough, time consuming, invigorating and very rewarding."

"I knew he wanted the job because yesterday he spent two hours digging himself out of his driveway," Compher said. "Then he drove two hours through a blizzard to get here."

Doeren will coach against his former team when Northern Illinois hosts Wisconsin on Sept. 17, 2011, at Chicago's Soldier Field.

Information from The Associated Press and ESPN's Joe Schad was used in this report.