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Ryan Walters named Purdue’s next head coach

Walters isn’t moving far away.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 12 Purdue at Illinois Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Illinois defensive coordinator Ryan Walters is expected to be named Purdue’s next head coach.

According to multiple reports Tuesday morning, Walters will be taking his talents to West Lafayette.

Walters, 36, led the Illini to the nation’s No. 1 scoring defense this season, and the No. 2 overall defense.

“I am incredibly humbled and honored to serve as the head football coach at Purdue University,” Walters said. “I am grateful to Director of Athletics Mike Bobinski and to President Daniels for this incredible opportunity. Purdue is a world-class university, and our football program will pursue the same excellence exhibited across our campus. My wife Tara and I, along with our boys, are beyond excited to join the Purdue and West Lafayette communities.”

He joined Illinois before the 2021 season after he was poached by Bret Bielema from Missouri.

For his efforts in 2022, Walters was named the 247Sports Defensive Coordinator of the Year, On3 Coordinator of the Year, and one of five finalists for the Broyles Award, given to the nation’s top assistant coach.

In November 2021, Walters’ contract was extended through 2024.

Purdue said Walters will be introduced at a welcome event on Wednesday at 11 a.m. CT.