Nebraska athletic director Tom Osborne announced his intention to retire during a Wednesday news conference in Lincoln.
Osborne, 75, will leave his position Jan. 1 and become AD emeritus. Chancellor Harvey Perlman said he already has begun interviewing candidates.
"I was honored that he asked me to do this job five years ago," Osborne said of Perlman. "At the time he asked me, I wasn't sure if it was a good idea or not. But hopefully it's worked out well. So I guess the next move is his."
He has been AD since the fall of 2007, since Steve Pederson was fired. He has spent 25 years as the Huskers' head football coach, and took the school to NCAA championships in 1994, 1995 and 1997.
Osborne left the Cornhuskers to become a Nebraska congressman in the state's third district. After his term ended in 2006, he returned to be athletic director at the university again in 2007 because of issues Perlman had with then a.d. Steve Pederson.