With Larry Fedora out as head coach of the University of North Carolina football team, a familiar face is coming back, the university confirmed Tuesday.
Game time will be announced in the spring. But after just five wins in the last two seasons, Cunningham moved quickly to "take the football program in a new direction".
The 67-year-old won 69 games during his nine-year stint as Tar Heels head coach between 1988 and 1997, recording three bowl victories, as well as three 10-win seasons and consecutive top-10 finishes in his final two seasons before becoming head coach at the University of Texas.
Brown left for Texas before the Tar Heels played in the Gator Bowl following the 1997 season, and in 16 seasons with the Longhorns, led them to a 158-48 record, including leading the Longhorns to the 2006 national championship and appearance in the 2009 national title game.
"Sally and I love North Carolina, we love this University and we are thrilled to be back, " Brown said in a press release.
The Longhorns also won the 2005 national championship.
He started 1-10 in each of his first two seasons, but steadily built up the program through strong recruiting, particularly with instate prospects.
The Austin American-Statesman reported that he would be interested in assembling a staff that would include former Auburn head coach Gene Chizik as his defensive coordinator and recently fired Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury as his offensive coordinator.
After that season, things fizzled out with UT combining for a 30-21 (18-17 Big 12) record over his last four seasons. In a 29-year career as a head coach, which began with a one-year run at Appalachian State in 1983, Brown has a career-record of 244-122. He's the second-winningest coach in both North Carolina and Texas history. He has always been regarded as one of college football's most wide-open and top offensive coaches. He was selected for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame this past January.