Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports



As expected, the University of Illinois officially announced the hiring of Hardy Nickerson as their defensive coordinator under head coach Lovie Smith.


Nickerson coached under Smith when he was with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Nickerson was not retained when the Buccaneers fired Smith and promoted offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter as their new head coach.

Nickerson was just hired to the 49ers' staff on January 27, just five days after interviewing with the team. The hire was praised by fans as a solid addition to new head coach Chip Kelly's coaching staff. Less than two month later, he is officially gone.

As a player, Nickerson was a five-time Pro Bowl player after being selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the fifth round of the 1987 NFL Draft out of Cal.

The 49ers still have outside linebackers coach Jason Tarver on staff.