Michigan Head Football Coach Jim Harbaugh announced Thursday (Jan. 17) the hiring of Shaun Nua as the program’s defensive line coach. Nua joins the Wolverines program after spending the 2018 season as defensive line coach at Arizona State.
“Shaun is a rising star in the coaching profession,” said Harbaugh. “He is well-respected among his peers, relates well with the student-athletes that he mentors and brings great passion and energy to his work. We are excited to have Shaun join our defensive coaching staff and work daily with our defensive linemen. Michigan football looks forward to having Shaun, Hilary, and their children, Losi, Kelina and Malia, join our University family.”
During his only season with the Sun Devils, Nua helped the program post a 7-6 record and reach the 2018 Las Vegas Bowl during Herm Edwards’ first season at the helm. Nua mentored Renell Wren who gained honorable mention All-Pac 12 honors after posting 43 tackles, 4.5 TFLs and 1.5 sacks from his interior defensive line position. Wren is listed as one of the top prospects in this year’s NFL Draft.
Nua spent six seasons coaching the defensive line at the U.S. Naval Academy (2012-17) prior to his time in Tempe. The Midshipmen compiled a 52-27 (.658) record during his tenure and earned a bowl berth each season, winning four of those postseason games. The Naval Academy beat rival Army four times and won three Commander-In-Chief’s Trophies.
The Midshipmen joined the American Athletic Conference in 2015 after being an Independent for 134 years and proceeded to put together a historic first season. Navy won a school record 11 games, finished 18th in both national polls and shared the AAC West Division Title with Houston. A year later, the academy played Temple in the AAC Championship game after posting a 9-5 record and 7-1 mark in league play.
Individually, Nua mentored defensive end Will Anthony, who earned first-team All-AAC and first-team All-East honors in 2015, after posting 61 tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks, which ranked fourth in the AAC.
Nua began his coaching career at BYU. He was an intern with the program in 2009 and became a graduate assistant coach during the 2010-11 seasons. During his final two years in Provo, Nua helped the Cougars rank in the top 25 defensively, listing 24th in total defense in 2010 and 13th in 2011. BYU won its bowl games during both seasons and finished the 2011 campaign ranked No. 25 in the final USA Today Coaches poll after posting a 10-3 record.
Nua played defensive end at BYU from 2002-04, earning second-team All-Mountain West Conference honors as a senior. He appeared in 23 games, playing in 12 contests as a junior and 11 games as a senior. Nua recorded 54 tackles, 16 tackles for loss and 10 sacks during his final two seasons. He graduated from BYU in 2005 with a bachelor’s degree in youth and family recreation and later earned his master’s degree in recreation management in 2013.
After finishing at BYU, Nua was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the seventh round of the 2005 NFL Draft. He played four seasons in the NFL, including three with the Steelers, and spent his final year with the Buffalo Bills. He was a member of the Steelers’ Super Bowl XL winning team in 2006.
A native of Pago Pago, American Samoa, Nua transferred to BYU from Eastern Arizona Junior College, where he earned Junior College All-American honors. He prepped at Tafuna High School in Tafuna, American Samoa.
About Coach Nua
Hometown: Pago Pago, American Samoa
High School: Tafuna
College: BYU (2005)
Children: Losi, Kelina and Malia
Shaun Nua’s Bowl Experience
Arizona State: 2018 Las Vegas Bowl
BYU: 2009 Las Vegas Bowl, 2010 New Mexico Bowl, 2011 Armed Forces Bowl
U.S. Naval Academy: 2012 Fight Hunger Bowl, 2013 Armed Forces Bowl, 2014 Poinsettia Bowl, 2015 Military Bowl, 2016 Armed Forces Bowl, 2017 Military Bowl
Shaun Nua’s Coaching Experience
Year Team Position
2009 BYU Intern (Defense)
2010-11 BYU Graduate Assistant (Defense)
2012-17 U.S. Naval Academy Defensive Line
2018 Arizona State Defensive Line