Scherer expected to go to UNLV

Arkansas linebackers coach Michael Scherer directs his players Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022, during practice at the university practice field.

FAYETTEVILLE — University of Arkansas linebackers coach Michael Scherer is expected to accept the position of defensive coordinator on his mentor Barry Odom’s new staff at UNLV, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette has learned.

UNLV is expected to make its official announcement on the hiring Monday.

Scherer, 29, a former linebacker at Missouri who played for and began coaching under Odom, will be one of the youngest coordinators in the FBS.

The likelihood of Scherer taking the job with Odom was reported by The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman soon after Odom took the Rebels’ head coaching reins in early December. It became more likely when Arkansas Coach Sam Pittman hired Travis Williams, a former linebacker who has specialized coaching that position, as his defensive coordinator on Dec. 17.

Scherer was elevated into a play-calling role for the Liberty Bowl and worked the game from the sideline. The Razorbacks allowed 544 passing yards and 603 total yards in their 55-53 triple-overtime win over the Jayhawks, while also notching 3 takeaways and 3 sacks to set a single-season school record with 42 sacks on the year.

Arkansas played the Liberty Bowl without four starters in linebackers Bumper Pool and Drew Sanders, defensive tackle Isaiah Nichols and nickel back Myles Slusher, and were down several other defensive backs who entered the transfer portal.

Odom, the former Missouri head coach, served as defensive coordinator under Pittman in his first three years on the job.

Scherer is the third Arkansas coach to depart the staff this offseason. All moved up a notch in responsibility, following Odom and tight ends coach Dowell Loggains, who is the new offensive coordinator at South Carolina.

Odom’s UNLV staff is taking on a Razorback flair, with Scherer being the fourth coach with ties to Arkansas to join the program.

UNLV’s new offensive coordinator is Bobby Petrino, who led Arkansas to a 34-17 record from 2008-11, including the No. 5 ranking in the final Associated Press poll in 2011 and the No. 12 ranking after the 2010 season.

Odom has also hired former Arkansas receiver James Shibest as his special teams coordinator.