Lovie Smith was hired in 2016 to revive what had become an irrelevant and losing Illinois Fighting Illini football program, but he wasn’t able to do it on a big enough scale and it appears the school has decided to go a separate direction.

Following the Illini’s 28-10 blowout loss to Northwestern in the Land of Lincoln game, reports this morning out of Champaign were that Smith’s days as head coach at the school were over. Howard Griffith, a former Illinois player and current BTN analyst, confirmed the news via tweet.

If it is over, then Smith finishes with a 17-37 record at Illinois. His best season came in 2019 when the Illini went 6-7 and lost 35-20 to the Cal Golden Bears in the Redbox Bowl. Smith was 10-33 overall in the Big Ten, including an 0-9 campaign in 2017.

Some of the reaction from media and industry people on Twitter can be found below.