"As was reported in several media outlets over the last few days, I was offered an opportunity as defensive coordinator at a school in the Big 12, a conference in which I played and coached," says Sanders. "I was flattered by the opportunity and appreciated John Bunting's willingness to let me explore that option. However, my heart is here at North Carolina. We have unfinished business. Coach Bunting does things the right way and I truly believe this is a program on the brink of doing great things. Dick Baddour has demonstrated to Coach Bunting and me his complete support and commitment to making Carolina Football one of the top programs in the country. Mr. Baddour, Coach Bunting and I had been discussing an extension in recent weeks and I am glad to have this done so I may fully concentrate on recruiting a special class to UNC. I look forward to our future here at Carolina."
Sanders just finished his second season as the Tar Heels' defensive coordinator and secondary coach. He previously served on staff at six other schools, including Nebraska, his alma mater, and Colorado State. The Markham, Ill., native played for Coach Tom Osborne and the Cornhuskers from 1985-89.
During his tenure in Chapel Hill, the Tar Heels have gone 9-7 in Atlantic Coast Conference play with wins over Miami, Boston College, Virginia and NC State (twice). Carolina's defense improved to No. 45 in the nation in 2005, up 64 spots from the previous year. The Tar Heels allowed 349 yards per game, the fewest since 2001.