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NIU football announces latest addition to coaching staff

January 14, 2011

Rod Carey, who has spent nearly all of his 13-year collegiate coaching career in the Midwest, has been named the offensive line coach at Northern Illinois University, NIU head coach Dave Doeren announced Thursday. Carey joins the Huskies after three seasons coaching the offensive line at the University of North Dakota. He completes Northern Illinois’ offensive coaching staff and is the eighth assistant football coach overall hired by Doeren.

Rod Carey

A Minnesota native who played at Indiana, Rod Carey has coached in Illinois, Wisconsin and North Dakota.

In addition to North Dakota, Carey has coached collegiately at Illinois State, Wisconsin-Stout and Minnesota. The Indiana graduate and Wayzata, Minn. native coached the North Dakota offensive line against the Huskies this past September at Huskie Stadium.

Doeren was happy to complete his offensive staff with the addition of Carey.

“I am very pleased to have Rod, his wife Tonya, daughter Kennedi, and son Charlie joining the NIU Family,” Doeren said. “He is an excellent teacher of the fundamentals of offensive line play. He has worked his way up in this profession and we share many of the same values as educators of the game of football. Our offensive line will play physical, smart, fundamentally sound football. Rod’s recruiting ties in Illinois, Wisconsin, and Minnesota will be very valuable here.”

Carey’s offensive line led the way for UND 1,000-yard rusher Josh Murray (1,146 yards) in 2008, and for the No. 2 running back in the Great West Conference a year later. The Fighting Sioux also passed for over 2,000 yards that season. Five of his offensive linemen have earned GWC all-conference honors over the last three seasons and one – Mitch Braegelmann – was a two-time first-team Academic All-American.

Prior to going to North Dakota, Carey spent the 2007 season as the offensive line coach at Illinois State University. His Redbird offensive line featured three players that would receive professional football opportunities in Brandon Joyce (St. Louis Rams, 2010); Jonathan St. Pierre (Toronto, 2010) and Isaiah Wiggins (Baltimore Ravens, 2008). From 2000-06, Carey served on the coaching staff at the University of Wisconsin-Stout, where he was the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach. His offensive units averaged nearly 400 yards per game during his seven seasons and set 14 school records, including the all-time conference rushing record. He coached Blue Devils’ offensive lineman Ben Knepper, one of the most decorated players ever at UW-Stout, as he earned multiple All-American and all-conference honors. In all, Carey coached 26 all-conference selections and seven All-Americans during his time at UW-Stout.

He began his collegiate coaching career at the University of Minnesota (1998-99) where he helped the Gophers to their first bowl game in over a decade with a trip to the 1999 Sun Bowl. His first coaching position was as the offensive line coach at his alma mater, Wayzata (Minn.) High School, from 1994-97.

A three-year starter at center for Indiana during his collegiate playing days, Carey served as a team captain and won IU’s Corby Davis Outstanding Offensive Player Award as a senior. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Indiana in 1994.

“I am very excited to be here and I want to thank Coach Doeren for giving me the opportunity here at Northern Illinois,” Carey said. “I am looking forward to working with him. He’s put together a great staff here and I can’t wait to get started.”

Carey’s addition leaves one spot unfilled on the Huskies’ coaching staff for 2011 and Doeren said he hopes to have the search process for the final assistant position, the cornerbacks coach, completed this week.

Earlier in week the NIU head coach Dave Doeren appeared on a segment of Comcast SportsNet’s Chicago Tribune Live. His interview can be viewed in the media player below.

More information on Northern Illinois football and Huskie athletics can be found at