Multiple sources reporting Smith now headed to Minnesota to join Fleck’s staff

First, Arkansas’ defensive coordinator Robb Smith was headed to Wake Forest.

Now he’s apparently taken a turn and is headed to Minnesota to join the staff of newly-hired coach P.J. Fleck.

ESPN.com’s Adam Rittenberg reported the story first at 1:24 p.m. Monday:

Minnesota is hiring Arkansas defensive coordinator Robb Smith for the same position, a source tells ESPN.

An official announcement is expected shortly. New Minnesota coach P.J. Fleck is hoping to complete his staff by Thursday.

Per terms of his contract, Smith would owe Arkansas $250,000 to break his contract, which runs through the 2018 season.

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It is not unusual when a coach is wanting to make a change the school will waive that so a coach the school wants to replace can leave without being fired.

Smith was in line to receive a $50,000 pay raise this month that would increase his annual compensation to $850,000.

The Gophers had fired Tracy Claeys after Fleck’s Western Michigan team lost to Wisconsin in the Cotton Bowl last week. They made in the coaching change in one week.

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Smith’s defense at Arkansas improved in 2014, but has gone downhill since. With second-half collapses in the final two games of the season, it comes as no surprise Smith is leaving.

The leader in the clubhouse to replace Smith is secondary coach Paul Rhoads, who just completed his first season on the Arkansas staff.