Oregon coordinator Aliotti to retire
Eugene, OR (SportsNetwork.com) - University of Oregon defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti announced Friday he will retire after 24 years with the Ducks following Monday's Alamo Bowl against Texas.
Aliotti, a 38-year collegiate coaching veteran, served three separate stints as an Oregon assistant coach. He began coaching at Oregon as a graduate assistant in 1978 and returned in 1988 to take the reins of the program's outside linebackers.
He was promoted to defensive coordinator prior to the 1993 season and helped lead the school to its first Rose Bowl appearance in 37 years following the 1994 campaign.
"After coaching for 38 years, it is time for a new chapter in my life and [my wife] Kathryn's," Aliotti said, "Coaching is all I've ever known, but it has been a labor of love and a fantastic ride."
Aliotti spent three seasons with the St. Louis Rams from 1995-97 and one season with UCLA before he returned to Eugene as the defensive coordinator in 1999.
The 1976 UC Davis graduate broke into the coaching ranks at his alma mater that fall. His coaching career included stops at Oregon State (1980-83) and Chico State (1984-87) in addition to his time at Oregon.
"I've been fortunate to enjoy a great career and to step away from the game when I felt the time was right. Now is that time." said Aliotti.
Aliotti put together some of the most successful defenses in school history during his long tenure with the Ducks, with Oregon leading the Pac-12 in pass defense three times (2000, 2005 and 2006) and total defense in 2005 (357.7 avg.). The Ducks also led the country in interceptions (26) and turnover margin (+1.62) in 2012.
Oregon never had a defense that allowed fewer points (243) during a 13-game season than in 2010, the season when the Ducks went 12-0 before losing to Auburn in the BCS Championship Game. For his efforts, Aliotti was nominated for the Broyles Award given to the nation's top collegiate assistant coach that year.
During the Ducks' 2001 Fiesta Bowl season, Oregon limited teams to 115.3 yards per game on the ground and Aliotti was rewarded as an AFLAC National Assistant Coach of the Year recipient.
This season Oregon leads the Pac-12 in fewest yards allowed per play (4.69), which was bettered by only eight other FBS schools. The Ducks rank 25th in the nation in scoring defense (21.6 avg.) and third in Pac-12 in that category for the second year in a row. They also lead the league in pass efficiency defense (14th nationally) and stand fourth in the Pac-12 in total defense (381.2 avg.).
"Nick's contributions to the football program at the University of Oregon cannot be overstated," head coach Mark Helfrich said "His dedication to the success of this program will certainly leave a lasting impression that is hard to measure. I want to thank him for his loyalty and efforts to help make Oregon football what it is today, and wish him and his wife, Kathy, a long and happy retirement."
The 10th-ranked Ducks will bring a 10-2 record in Monday's Alamo Bowl matchup with the Longhorns, which will also serve as the final game for outgoing Texas head coach Mack Brown.
12/27 18:30:51 ET