Cheetahs forward Torsten van Jaarsveld will lead the side during this year's Currie Cup campaign in place of Adriaan Strauss.
Strauss is set to be away on international duty with the Springboks, although his future with the franchise is also in doubt after speculation linking him with the Bulls.
The 27-year-old van Jaarsveld, who can play hooker or flanker, will take charge after missing the Super Rugby season due to a serious knee injury.
Rory Duncan will be the acting head coach for the Cheetahs, assisted by Franco Smith and Os du Randt, with Naka Drotske heading to Europe to analyse different coaching methods.
The Cheetahs have also secured the services of Pumas and Lions full-back Coenie van Wyk for next season in Super Rugby.