Pagano Headed Back to NFL

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- As first reported by Inside Carolina on Sunday night, North Carolina defensive coordinator/defensive backs Chuck Pagano has decided to leave UNC after one season to take an assistant coaching job with the NFL's Baltimore Ravens. A UNC official confirmed the report to IC on Monday morning.

"I appreciate everything Chuck did to help us improve our defense last season," said UNC head coach Butch Davis. "He has a great opportunity to return to the NFL and I wish him the best."

The Tar Heel defensive unit ranked 35th nationally in 2007 in total defense, including ranking 27th in the nation in pass defense. This was a stark improvement from 2006, where UNC's overall defense ranked No. 92 in the country.

"We are in the process of evaluating potential defensive coaching candidates," Davis said. "There is no timetable for the hire as we search to find the best person for the University of North Carolina. Finding someone who is the right fit with our staff and players is my top priority."

UNC hired Pagano in Jan. 2007 from the Oakland Raiders, where he served as defensive backs coach for two seasons. Pagano coached the secondary and was special teams coordinator under Butch Davis at Miami from 1995-2000 and was Davis' secondary coach in Cleveland from 2001-04.

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