Tim Beckman is back coaching again. He's not being paid for it, and technically he has no real pull in decision-making, but he's coaching college football all the same.
His new employer: North Carolina.
Beckman, fired literally days before the start of the 2015 season, is a volunteer coach for the Tar Heels, according to Champaign News-Gazette. North Carolina officials confirmed Beckman's arrival to the News-Gazette and the Raleigh News & Observer, the latter of which states "there is no hiring process for a volunteer coach."
North Carolina spokesman Kevin Best told CBS Sports that Beckman is working as a "volunteer assistant" with the Tar Heels' defense and is not a coach. He is limited to watching film and scouting, and he is prohibited from providing instruction to players.
Beckman was fired nearly a year ago to the day after an external investigation found the coach mistreated players by allegedly discouraging them from receiving medical treatment if they were hurt, among many other things. In a statement, Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas said the decision to fire Beckman was "based on the health and well-being of our student-athletes" and that "the findings don't reflect the culture we are building with Illinois athletics."
UNC coach Larry Fedora defended his decision to bring Beckman in during an afternoon availability on Wednesday.
"I know Tim. I know his side of the story, also. So I was comfortable with it," Fedora said, via Andrew Carter of the N&O. "If I wouldn't have been, obviously I wouldn't have brought him. I wouldn't have allowed him to be in our program. But I was very comfortable with it. I don't have any issues with it at all."
Beckman, who went 12-25 overall with the Illini and 4-20 in Big Ten play, denied the allegations. Thomas was later fired last November.
"And I know (criticism is) going to happen, and then a couple of days from now it won't be news," Fedora added. "I mean, I promise you, I didn't see anywhere where the NCAA said that he should be banished from the game of football. You know?
"I mean, the guy didn't win enough games. That's all it was."
It's not unprecedented for a coach to land another job after he's been fired because of allegations of player abuse. Mark Mangino and Jim Leavitt -- who led Kansas and South Florida, respectively -- are two examples of coaches who found jobs after their dismissals. However, both of those coaches resurfaced years later, not 365 days after the fact.
As for Beckman, he worked with Fedora at Oklahoma State under Mike Gundy.
North Carolina will travel to Illinois on Sept. 10. The News-Gazette reports there is "no word yet on whether Beckman will be a part of the travel party."