CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) -Southern Illinois introduced Dale Lennon as its new football coach, handing the former North Dakota coach a program that came one victory short of the national title game this season.
Lennon signed a five-year contract that will pay him $200,000 a year, the school said.
``I feel very good about the task that we are about to go on and the journey we are about to enter,'' Lennon said at a news conference Friday.
Lennon succeeds Jerry Kill, who resigned to take over at Northern Illinois less than a week after he guided the Salukis (12-2) to the semifinals of the Football Championship Subdivision.
Lennon led North Dakota - his alma mater - to the Division II national title in 2001, a national runner-up finish and five North Central Conference championships since taking over in 1999. The Fighting Sioux went 10-2 this season, advancing to the second round of the Division II playoffs.
With 90 wins at North Dakota, Lennon tied Roger Thomas for the most in school history.
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