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REPORT: Illinois DL coach Austin Clark hired by Miami Dolphins

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Lovie will have a spot to fill this offseason.

Illinois v Rutgers Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images

Lovie Smith has a coaching hire to make this offseason.

Coming off Illinois’ first bowl appearance in five seasons, Illinois defense line coach Austin Clark was snatched away and hired by the Miami Dolphins on Thursday morning, according to a report.

Clark will be the Dolphins’ outside linebackers coach under second-year head coach Brian Flores.

The 30-year-old spent two seasons in Champaign after being hired away from USC in February 2018. That was after two years in SoCal helping with their defensive line and outside linebackers.

Clark is considered a young rising talent in the coaching world and generated talent on the Illini’s defensive line with Bobby Roundtree in 2018 and USC transfer Oluwole Betiku in 2019.

While at USC, Clark coach three NFL Draft picks (Uchenna Nwosu, Rasheem Green, Stevie Tu’ikolovatu).

Reaction

Former Illini and NFL wideout Arrelious Benn tweeted at TCR that Clark, like others, is a case of “coaches putting themselves first.”

Florida native Mike Epstein said he’ll miss Clark.