Notre Dame defensive coordinator Mike Elko is headed to Texas A&M to serve in the same position under Aggie head coach Jimbo Fisher, according to the A&M athletics department.
"I am excited to bring one of the top defensive minds in the nation onto our staff here at Texas A&M," Fisher said in a release. "No matter where Mike has worked, he has consistently produced defenses that have been among the nation's best."
According to the university release, Elko's employment will be official at the completion of Texas A&M's human resources hiring process.
Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly announced Elko's departure on Twitter Thursday afternoon. The hire was first reported by TexAgs.com’s Billy Liucci.
"Mike Elko has made the decision to accept an offer to be the defense coordinator at Texas A&M," the Kelly tweet read. "We appreciate his work and effort over the last year with our program and wish him the best moving forward. Notre Dame simply attracts people at the top of their profession, and, with a young and talented football team coming back in 2018, we'll certainly add our next great defensive coordinator in very short order."
According to Yahoo Sports' Pete Thamel, Elko's contract pays out an average of $1.8 million per year over three years.
Elko leaves South Bend after only one season, in which he helped Notre Dame go from 4-8 to 10-3. Notre Dame finished 31st in the nation in total defense, averaging 369.2 yards and 21.5 points per game. The Irish gave up 17 points in a victory over LSU in the Citrus Bowl.
According to a report by IrishIllustrated.com, Texas A&M made a run at Elko after the Citrus Bowl, but Kelly told the fan site that the defensive coordinator would not leave his current post.
Before heading to South Bend, Elko served as defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Wake Forest for three seasons after serving five years in a similar capacity at Bowling Green. He is one of only two defensive coordinators to have a team rank in the top 40 of FBS schools in total defense over the last five seasons.
Wake Forest dropped all three contests against Jimbo Fisher's Florida State team while Elko served as the defensive coordinator, but the 2015 Demon Deacon squad held the Seminoles to their fourth-lowest total yards output with 329.
Elko’s hire comes hours after the Aggies failed to land LSU defensive coordinator Aranda, according to multiple reports. Aranda to stay at LSU received a four-year, guaranteed $10 million contract, making him the first college football assistant coach to reach the $2 million plateau annually, according to the Associated Press.