USC Football Assistant Coach Dave Nichol Passes Away
LOS ANGELES — Dave Nichol, who was hired this past December as USC's inside wide receivers coach and associate head coach for offense, passed away today (Friday, March 25) in McKinney, Tex. He was 45.
"We are heartbroken and devastated," said USC football head coach Lincoln Riley. "Dave was such a tremendous human being and a fantastic football coach. He absolutely loved the game and constantly poured his heart and soul into his teams. He will be dearly missed. My thoughts and prayers are with his family. We, as a program, look forward to playing and coaching for him as we move forward."
Nichol is survived by his father, Robert Nichol Sr., and brothers Robert Nichol Jr. and family and Jimmy Nichol and family.
Information regarding a memorial service for Nichol is pending.
My heart is broken.
I met Dave Nichol in 2002. He gave me my shot to be a college player and coach. Taught me everything. Safe to say I wouldn't be here today without Dave.
1 of the best/most unselfish people ever. Love you & miss you brother-
— Lincoln Riley (@LincolnRiley) March 26, 2022
Riley had announced on March 21 that Nichol was away from the team while focusing on a medical matter.
Nichol came to USC after spending the previous 2 seasons (2020-21) at Mississippi State as the inside receivers coach. Receiver Jaden Walley was a Freshman All-American in 2020.
He was at Washington State from 2016 to 2019, the first season coaching the wide receivers and then handling the inside receivers the final 3 years. Receiver Brandon Arconado led the Pac-12 in receiving yards (100.8) in 2019 while catching 78 passes for 1,109 yards and 7 TDs. Receiver Renard Bell made the Pac-12 All-Freshman first team in 2017. Receiver Gabe Marks repeated as an All-Pac-12 first teamer in 2016 while becoming the Pac-12 career receptions leader (316) and finishing second in touchdown catches (37).
Before that, Nichol was at East Carolina for 4 years (2012-15), serving as the outside receivers coach for the first 3 seasons and then the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2015. The Pirates were third nationally in passing offense and fifth in total offense in 2014. During his tenure, ECU set or tied 70 individual or team game, season and career offensive records.
He spent 5 seasons (2007-11) at Arizona. He began as an offensive graduate assistant in 2007, working with the offensive line. He was promoted to outside receivers coach in 2008 and added the inside receivers in 2009. Arizona was 10th nationally in passing offense in 2010 and third in 2011 (370.8).
Nichol began his coaching career as a student coach in 2000 and 2001 at Texas Tech, his alma mater, working with the quarterbacks and wide receivers. He then spent 2002 as the passing game coordinator, quarterback coach and receivers coach at Cisco (Tex.) Junior College, 3 seasons (2003-05) at Texas Tech as an offensive graduate assistant and 2006 as an offensive graduate assistant at Baylor.
He was a wide receiver at Texas Tech, lettering in 1999.
He prepped at Jesuit College Preparatory School of Dallas (Tex.).
— USC Football (@USC_FB) March 25, 2022
We will miss you DNich! Great man, great coach, great Friend! pic.twitter.com/BJdJhkFhie
— Coach Grinch (@CoachGrinch) March 26, 2022