(CNN)Bret Bielema is returning to college football as head coach at the University of Illinois.
Bielema is currently the outside linebackers coach for the NFL’s New York Giants, but will be leaving at the end of the week after less than a season, according to the Friday announcement from Illinois. The coach is no stranger to the Big Ten. He was the head coach at Wisconsin from 2006 to 2012, winning 68 games, three Big Ten championships and making six bowl appearances. He’s also from Illinois and played college football at Iowa. “Illinois and the Big Ten is home for me, and I can’t be any more excited about the opportunity in front of me with the Fighting Illini,” Bielema said in a statement. “We want to build a program that makes Illini Nation proud and regain the passion that I’ve seen when Illinois wins. … I look forward to re-connecting with the high school coaches around the state making it clear we intend to keep our players home.”Read MoreBielema’s initial contract is for six years beginning with a salary of $4.2 million. “Bret’s blue collar work ethic and genuine, authentic manner will allow him to form strong connections to his players and staff and positive relationships in our community and our state,” Director of Athletics Josh Whitman said. “These qualities, combined with his commitment to education and his track record of success, give me great confidence in his leadership of our football program.”Bielema was the head coach at Arkansas from 2013-2017, where he was less successful, but he went to three consecutive bowl games before leaving for the NFL. He spent two seasons with the Patriots before he started his role with the Giants.