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Safeties coach Gill Byrd steps away, Illinois hires 2 defensive coaches

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The Illini are making moves.

Redbox Bowl - California v Illinois Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Illinois Football officially announced several changes to its coaching staff Friday afternoon.

According to a news release, defensive passing game coordinators and safeties coach Gill Byrd has chosen to step away from the program.

In a statement, Byrd said: “The Byrd family loves the [Lovie] Smith family. As Christians, my wife and I have always functioned under the principle that you finish what you started. Because of the priority that God places on the family and because of an illness in our family, we believe our time is up here in Champaign-Urbana. I would like to thank Lovie and everyone at the University of Illinois for the great time we’ve had while in Champaign-Urbana. The future is bright for both the Byrds and the University of Illinois football program.”

Byrd coached the Illini’s secondary fo two years after working with Smith for the Rams, Bears and Buccaneers.

Illinois added Alfred Davis (defensive tackles) and Jimmy Lindsey (defensive ends) to the staff.

The Illini also announced Keynodo Hudson will coach all defensive backs in 2020.

Davis comes from Hutchinson Community College, where he was associate head coach and co-defensive coordinator. He also served as a graduate assistant coach at Arkansas from 2014-16.

Lindsey was coaching defensive ends at Western Kentucky prior to coming to Champaign. He also has stops at Gardner-Webb, Miami (Ohio) and Georgia Southern, and plentiful NFL experience with internships.