Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly will be hired as LSU’s next head coach, sources confirmed to The Athletic on Monday night. LSU’s offer to Kelly is a 10-year deal that will take him north of $100 million with incentives, sources tell The Athletic‘s Matt Fortuna and Brody Miller.
Kelly, who took over in South Bend in 2010 and is the winningest coach in Fighting Irish history, has made a pair of College Football Playoff appearances and has Notre Dame in the mix again this season.
The Tigers were rumored to be in play for several coaches who inked elsewhere, including now-USC head coach Lincoln Riley. But Kelly, whose 263 career wins are the third-most among active FBS head coaches behind only Alabama’s Nick Saban and North Carolina’s Mack Brown, would be a big hire for LSU.
Expectations are high at LSU, where its previous three head coaches have each won a national title: Saban in 2003, Les Miles in 2007 and Ed Orgeron in 2019.
At Notre Dame, there will be some momentum among decision-makers at the university to elevate defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman to head coach, sources indicate. The Athletic‘s Pete Sampson reports that while first-time head coaches generally don’t work at Notre Dame, the Fighting Irish are in a more stable place currently than during previous hires.
ND athletic director Jack Swarbrick has communicated to Irish assistant coaches that they should stay on the road, continue to visit with prospects and calm committed recruits’ nerves, sources told The Athletic‘s Matt Fortuna. An interim head coach has not been named yet.
Kelly sent a message to Notre Dame in Team Works on Monday night apologizing for the way that the news of his leaving broke and that he wasn’t able to tell the team himself. He will meet with the team Tuesday at 7 a.m. ET.
(Photo: Geoff Burke / USA Today)