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Marcus Freeman named Notre Dame’s new head football coach

Notre Dame defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman watches during warmups before an NCAA college football game against Navy in South Bend, Ind., Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021.
Paul Sancya/AP
/
AP
FILE - Notre Dame defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman watches during warmups before an NCAA college football game against Navy in South Bend, Ind., Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021. Notre Dame is working on a deal to promote defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman to head coach to replace Brian Kelly, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on Wednesday night, Dec. 1, 2021. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)

By Jakob Lazzaro

Marcus Freeman has been officially named the new head coach of the University of Notre Dame’s football team. Freeman was hired by Notre Dame in January 2021 as a defensive coordinator.

The news comes after former head coach Brian Kelly unexpectedly left the team for a head coaching job at LSU earlier this week.

According to a news release, Freeman will be introduced as head coach during a 2 p.m. Monday press conference and will coach the Fighting Irish in the team’s upcoming bowl game.

In the release, Freeman said it is “an honor” to be named head coach.

“I am eternally grateful to both Father John Jenkins and Jack Swarbrick for giving me the opportunity to lead the exceptional men who make this program what it is,” Freeman said in the release. “Notre Dame is a very special place and I look forward to pursuing a national championship with the most outstanding student-athletes, coaches and staff in college football.”

Before joining Notre Dame in 2021, Freeman worked as the Cincinnati Bearcats’ defensive coordinator for four seasons and served on the coaching staff of the Purdue Boilermakers and the Kent State Golden Flashes.

He played college football for The Ohio State University Buckeyes from 2004 to 2008 and was selected by the Chicago Bears as a fifth-round pick in the 2009 NFL draft.

He spent time with the Bears, the Buffalo Bills and the Houston Texans before ending his playing career in 2010 due to a medical condition.

Contact Jakob at jlazzaro@wvpe.org or follow him on Twitter at @JakobLazzaro.