The 53-year-old Chizik has been serving as a television analyst for ESPN since his departure from Auburn following the 2012 season.
Chizik led the Auburn Tigers to the national title after an undefeated season in 2010. He compiled a 33-19 record at Auburn, but was fired after a 3-9 season in 2012.
Before joining Auburn, he went 5-19 in two seasons as the head coach at Iowa State. Prior to that, he was a highly regarded defensive coordinator at both Auburn and Texas.
North Carolina head coach Larry Fedora said he is excited to have Chizik join his staff.
“Throughout the hiring process, I worked closely with athletic director Bubba Cunningham to invest in someone who believes in the mission of the University and shares our vision of providing an outstanding experience to the student-athletes,” said Fedora. “Gene Chizik believes in competing at the highest level both on and off the field and is another highly regarded leader for our program.”
North Carolina finished the 2014 season with a 6-7 record and ranked No. 119 in scoring defense, giving up 39.0 points per game.
- Brad Rowland