Illinois fired football coach Lovie Smith after five seasons without a winning record. Illinois would've paid Lovie Smith $12 million if they fired him after last season, his third as Illini head coach. Former Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith is back in the NFL. He’ll be turning 63 before next season but … 15 Northwestern, which dropped the Illini to 2-5 on the season. Smith never delivered a winning record during his tenure with the Fighting Illini, and they were only able to muster a 2-5 mark during the COVID-19-shortened 2020 Big Ten season. Lovie Smith was fired on Sunday following Saturday's 28-10 loss to No. 2016: Iowa 28, Illinois 0. Per Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle, the Houston Texans are hiring Smith to be their new defensive coordinator. ... Lovie Smith is an unquestionably massive upgrade for Illinois. Lovie Smith leaves Illinois with a 17-39 overall record and was 10-33 in the Big Ten. Wisch: Lovie Smith’s Record Against Top Competition Is Not Good December 6, 2012 at 3:32 pm Filed Under: Chicago Bears , Dave Wischnowsky , Green Bay Packers , Lovie Smith , Mike McCarthy This is the team Lovie has built towards, and with the NCAA making this a free eligibility year, the Illini have a chance to cement themselves as a decent program under Lovie Smith. In Tampa, Smith replaced Greg Schiano, but was canned after a pedestrian 8-24 record. You could even say it was downright hideous. Over five years coaching the Illini, Smith compiled a 17-39 record with a 10-33 mark in Big Ten play. Asmussen: Let's get back to recruiting high school talent It wasn't a pretty sight. It's no wonder Smith's teams have been outscored in the series 155-26. Fresh off the memorable 14-13 upset of #2 Michigan, Iowa shut out Lovie's first Illinois team 28-0 on a cold, windy day at Memorial Stadium. 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