Ken Norton Jr. returns to UCLA as inside linebackers coach

March 4, 2022 GMT

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ken Norton Jr. has returned to UCLA as inside linebackers coach.

Bruins head coach Chip Kelly announced the hiring Friday of Norton, most recently the Seattle Seahawks’ defensive coordinator.

Norton was fired by the Seahawks in January after four seasons in charge of Pete Carroll’s defense. Norton previously had been the Oakland Raiders’ defensive coordinator for three years before reuniting with Carroll, his boss at Southern California from 2004-09.

Norton was a star linebacker at UCLA from 1984-87, leading the Bruins to four bowl games and the 1985 Pac-10 championship. He went on to become the only player in NFL history to win three consecutive Super Bowls.

Norton will work with Bill McGovern, who became Kelly’s defensive coordinator in February. McGovern, the Chicago Bears’ inside linebackers coach last season, coached under Kelly with the Philadelphia Eagles.

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McGovern and Norton are tasked with improving a defense that has largely struggled for four years under Kelly and ex-defensive coordinator Jerry Azzinaro. UCLA hasn’t cracked the top 70 in total defense in the nation during Kelly’s underwhelming tenure with the Bruins.

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