Minnesota has fired defensive coordinator Robb Smith, head coach P.J. Fleck said on Sunday.

The decision was made just one day after the Gophers surrendered over 600 yards in a 55-31 loss to Illinois on Saturday. It was the second time in three weeks they had allowed more than 600 yards in a game. Nebraska also had a huge offensive day a few weeks ago in a 53-28 win.

“These decisions are always difficult, especially when they involve a close friend and colleague,” said Fleck. “I want to thank Robb, Amy and their family for all the time and energy they spent helping our program grow. Robb is an elite man and will always be a dear friend of mine.”

Defensive line coach Joe Rossi will fill in as the interim defensive coordinator for the remainder of the season.

Minnesota is 4-5 on the season and 1-5 in B1G play. While the defense played well through the non-conference schedule, the Gophers have given up 43.2 points per game in six conference games. All five losses have come by at least two touchdowns.

The Gophers have surrendered a minimum of 30 points in six straight games.

Smith had been on Fleck’s staff at Minnesota since 2017.