Bill Busch, a veteran with over 20 years of collegiate experience coaching the secondary, has made an impact both on and off the field since joining the LSU staff in 2018. Busch enters his third season with the Tigers in 2020, coaching the LSU safeties.
On the field, Busch coached safety Grant Delpit to back-to-back first team All-America seasons in 2018 and 2019. Delpit, who also claimed the Thorpe Award as the nation’s top defensive back in 2019, was a unanimous All-America as a sophomore in 2018. He was also a finalist for the Nagurski Award that year.
Off the field, Busch used his recruiting prowess to help LSU land graduate transfer quarterback Joe Burrow, who led LSU to a 15-0 mark and the national championship in 2019. Burrow, the Heisman Trophy winner in 2019, set NCAA records for passing TDs (60) and total TDs (65) as the Tiger offense set numerous SEC and school records on their way to winning the school’s fourth national title. Busch was also instrumental in LSU landing several other highly-rated prospects, including nose tackle Siaki Ika from Salt Lake City.
Under Busch, LSU’s group of safeties continue to be a defensive strength for the Tigers. Along with Delpit, Jacoby Stevens earned SEC Defensive Player of the Week three times in 2019, while Kary Vincent Jr. had four interceptions and played a key role in LSU leading the league in interceptions for the second straight year.
In 2018, LSU led the SEC in interceptions (17) and finished second in the league in pass efficiency defense with a 104.5 rating. The Tigers were the only team in the league to hold opposing quarterbacks to less than 50 percent completion percentage (49.7) in 2018.
Busch joined the Tigers after spending two seasons at Rutgers where he served as defensive backs coach in 2016 and then added the title of co-defensive coordinator in 2017.
In his first season at Rutgers, Busch took over a group of safeties mixed with veterans and underclassmen and helped the Scarlet Knights rank among the nation’s best in both redzone defense (No. 6 at 72.7 percent) and passing defense (No. 18 at 186.5 yards per game).
Busch spent the 2015 season at Ohio State handling quality control on defense. Prior to joining the Buckeyes, he worked for two seasons as the safeties coach at Wisconsin. Busch also assisted with the special teams unit for the Badgers. In his first season at Wisconsin, Busch helped lead a defensive backfield that ranked 17th nationally in passing defense and tied for 13th in passing yards per attempt in 2013.
Busch arrived at Wisconsin after spending four seasons at Utah State. In his first two seasons (2009-10), Busch served as defensive coordinator before taking over as safeties and special teams coach during the 2011-12 seasons. Busch also served as associate head coach for the Aggies in 2011 and 2012.
In 2012, Utah State won a school-record 11 games and finished the year ranked No. 16 in the nation. Defensively, the Aggies were No. 7 nationally in scoring defense (15.4 points per game) and No. 14 in total defense (322.1 yards per game)
In 2004, Busch returned to Nebraska for his second stint with the Huskers, coaching the outside linebackers and serving as special teams coordinator. He previously worked as a graduate assistant at Nebraska from 1990-93. Busch moved over to coach the safeties and continued to handle special teams duties in 2005-07.
During his tenure, the Huskers blocked 16 kicks, including seven in 2005. Nebraska ranked in the top 25 nationally in net punting (24th in 2006) and punt returns (17th in 2005) under Busch, as well. NU’s kickoff coverage unit ranked 15th nationally in 2006 after finishing 22nd the previous year.
Busch coached the secondary at Utah from 2001-03, spending a season under head coach Urban Meyer. Utah boasted one of the top defenses in the Mountain West Conference in 2003 to help the Utes to a 10-2 record and their first outright conference title since 1957. Utah’s 10 victories that season tied the then-school record and its No. 21 final national ranking in both polls was the school’s highest since 1994. The secondary ranked second in the Mountain West and 27th nationally in pass efficiency defense, as Utah surrendered just nine passing touchdowns in 12 games.
In 2001, Utah ranked 17th nationally in pass efficiency defense while earning an 8-4 overall record that concluded with a victory over USC in the Las Vegas Bowl.
Before his three seasons at Utah, Busch spent four years at New Mexico State where he coached the defensive backs. His first full-time coaching job was at Northern Arizona where he was the secondary coach in 1995 and 1996. Busch also served as the co-defensive coordinator in 1996 where he helped guide Northern Arizona to its first appearance in the Division I-AA (now FCS) playoffs as the Lumberjacks posted a 9-3 overall mark and finished second in the Big Sky Conference.
Busch, a Pender, Nebraska, native, earned his bachelor’s degree in education from Nebraska Wesleyan in 1988. He added a master’s degree in 1990 from Nebraska-Kearney. He married the former Laura Bonta in April of 2019 and the couple has three children – Sydney, Olivia, and Gianna.
THE BUSCH FILE
Year at LSU: Second
Birthdate: April 27, 1965
Hometown: Pender, Nebraska
Children: Sydney, Olivia, and Gianna
College: Nebraska Wesleyan (1988)
Post-Graduate: Nebraska-Kearney (1990)
1985-87 Nebraska Wesleyan (wide receiver)
1989 Nebraska Wesleyan (graduate assistant/defensive ends
1990-93 Nebraska (graduate assistant/secondary)
1994 Wisconsin (graduate assistant)
1995-96 Northern Arizona (secondary, 1995; co-defensive coordinator/secondary, 1996)
1997-00 New Mexico State (secondary)
2001-03 Utah (safeties, 2001-02; secondary, 2003)
2004-07 Nebraska (outside linebackers/special teams coordinator, 2004; safeties/special teams coordinator, 2005-07)
2009-12 Utah State (defensive coordinator, 2009-10; associate head coach/safeties/special teams coordinator, 2011-12)
2013-14 Wisconsin (safeties)
2015 Ohio State (defensive quality control)
2016-17 Rutgers (defensive backs, 2016; co-defensive coordinator/defensive backs, 2017)
2018-20 LSU (safeties)
Season Bowl Team Opponent Results
1994 Hall of Fame Wisconsin Duke W, 34-25
2005 Alamo Nebraska Michigan W, 32-28
2006 Cotton Nebraska Auburn L, 17-14
2011 Famous Idaho Utah State Ohio L, 24-23
2012 Famous Idaho Utah State Toledo W, 41-15
2013 Capital One Wisconsin South Carolina L, 34-24
2014 Outback Wisconsin Auburn W, 34-31
2015 Fiesta Ohio State Notre Dame W, 44-28
2018 Fiesta LSU UCF W, 40-32
2019 Chick-fil-A Peach LSU Oklahoma 63-28
2019 CFP National Championship LSU Clemson 42-25