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Ex-UNC football star Dre Bly out as Tar Heels' CB coach

North Carolina and cornerbacks coach Dre Bly have "mutually agreed to part ways," according to a release from the school Wednesday.

Bly is one of UNC's all-time greats, a two-time All-American cornerback for the Tar Heels from 1995 through 1998. He had served as one of coach Mack Brown's top recruiters, particularly in the Virginia Beach area, where he helped lure blue-chip recruits like Tony Grimes and Tayon Holloway.

Despite Bly's success on the recruiting trail, North Carolina's pass defense struggled while stars like Grimes, who entered the transfer portal last month, showed little progress in recent years.

"We all love Dre Bly and appreciate what he means to the University of North Carolina as a Hall of Famer, an unbelievable advocate for the program, and an excellent coach," Brown said. "Dre and I mutually agreed to part ways so that he could explore other opportunities in the coaching profession. We appreciate everything he's done for the program over the last few years and wish him nothing but the best moving forward."

North Carolina's defense allowed 271 passing yards per game (116th nationally) and an opponent Total QBR of 68.7 (113th) in 2022, in its first year under defensive coordinator Gene Chizik.

Bly led the nation with 11 interceptions during his redshirt freshman season at UNC in 1996 and was a finalist for defensive player of the year as a sophomore. He's second all time in the ACC in interceptions with 20.

Bly was a second-round draft selection of the Rams in 1999 and was a two-time Pro Bowler during his 12-year NFL career, finishing with 43 interceptions in 167 games with four different teams.