Athletic manager Josh Whitman said his belief is demonstrated by the extension in the plan, his team and Smith they have going. Whitman hired Smith, the former head coach who led the Bears to the Super Bowl, shortly after he had been named AD in 2016.

Smith’s original deal was for six years and $21 million.

Smith is 9-27 in 3 seasons and 4-23 in the Big Ten, but there were signs of progress this year. The Illini were winless in the Big Ten in 2017 and 2-10.

“Those of us view the progress being created every day and each, and we expect to be competing for championships very soon,” Smith said. “everybody else on the campus and Our fans deserve nothing less. ”

Whitman said the school is committed to building a program that has had one winning season as the 2007 team went to the Rose Bowl. A $15 million football building will start next year and will include enlarged strength and conditioning and sports medicine spaces, coaches’ offices, meeting rooms and other regions for recruitment and prospect hosting.


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