CORAL GABLES, Fla. - Thursday was a good day for the Miami Hurricanes family. On the same day that UM alum Mario Cristobal returned as the Canes' Associate Head Coach, former Miami standout Rob Chudzinski was named head coach of the Cleveland Browns, the organization announced last Thursday night.
Chudzinski spent 10 seasons on the Hurricanes sideline as an assistant from 1994-2003. He began as a graduate assistant (1994-95) and spent five seasons as tight ends coach for the Canes (1996-2000). His final three seasons in Coral Gables were as offensive coordinator. During his three seasons as Miami's OC, the Hurricanes played in three BCS bowl games, including two National Championship Game appearances. He mentored several future NFL stars, including 2013 NFL Pro Bowlers Frank Gore and Andre Johnson. Chudzinski also coached other NFL Pro Bowls such as Kellen Winslow II, Jeremy Shockey, Clinton Portis, Bryant McKinnie, Willis McGahee and Bubba Franks.
In his first year as Miami's offensive coordinator, the Canes defeated Nebraska in the Rose Bowl to win the program's fifth national title, finishing the season 12-0. The following season in 2002, the Canes set school records for scoring (527), total yards (6,074) and rushing touchdowns (33), while averaging 40.5 points per game.
At Miami, he also tutored three All-America tight ends that went on to become first-round NFL draft picks - Bubba Franks (1999), Jeremy Shockey (2001) and 2003 John Mackey Award winner Kellen Winslow II (2004).
A four-year letterwinner (1986-90) and three-year starting tight end for the Hurricanes, he was a member of two national championship teams (1987 and 1989). He graduated from Miami in 1990 with a bachelor's degree in business administration and again in 1996 with his MBA.
After leaving Miami in 2003, he spent one year with the Cleveland Browns as the tight ends coach and the final five games of the season as the interim offensive coordinator. He spent the 2005 and 2006 seasons as the tight ends coach for the San Diego Chargers before returning to Cleveland (2007-08) as the offensive coordinator.
He was the assistant head coach for the San Diego Chargers for two seasons (2009-10) before spending the last two seasons as the Carolina Panthers' offensive coordinator (2011-12).