Chip Long Named New Illini TE Coach

With the sudden departure of tight end coach Greg Nord, the Illini needed to find a last-minute replacement. It is now official that Chip Long will join the Illini staff. Long has worked with Paul Petrino and understands the Illini offense.

UI SID press release

CHAMPAIGN, ILL -- Illinois Head Football Coach Ron Zook today named Chip Long to the Illini football staff as assistant coach with responsibilities as tight ends coach.

"Chip is an outstanding young coach," Zook said. "He is very knowledgeable of our offense after his experience with Paul Petrino. He's played the position at a high level. Chip brings great energy to an already energized staff."

Long comes to Illinois after serving two seasons at Arkansas as a graduate assistant working with tight ends. At Arkansas, he helped develop tight end D.J. Williams, who became the first semifinalist in school history for the Mackey Award in 2008. As a sophomore Williams had a record-breaking season that saw him become an All-SEC first team selection by the AP and a second-team honoree by the league coaches. He finished the season as the team leader in receptions (61) and receiving yards. In 2009, Williams was again a second-team All-SEC selection by the coaches and enters his senior season as a 2010 preseason All-American.

"I'm extremely excited to come to Illinois and have the opportunity to work with a great coaching staff that has high expectations," Long said. "I'm fortunate to be coming into a system that I'm very familiar with, having worked with both Coach Petrino and Coach (Jeff) Brohm earlier in my career. They've been terrific mentors as I've broken into the coaching profession and I look forward to working with them again here at Illinois."

Prior to his stint in Fayetteville, Long spent two seasons at Louisville and worked with the wide receivers and quarterbacks. His first year with the Cardinals was spent with Petrino and the second with current Illinois quarterbacks coach Jeff Brohm.

A receiver and tight end for North Alabama, Long was a multi-year starter and in 2005 earned All-America, first-team All-South Region and first-team All-Gulf South Conference honors. He helped the Lions to the national semifinals in both 2003 and 2005. Long was recently named as the tight end on the Gulf South Conference All-Decade Team.

A native of Birmingham, Ala., Long received his bachelor's degree in history with minors in both psychology and business administration.

Long will begin his duties immediately.

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