Wherever Jerry Kill has gone, he’s been a winner. Most coaches take the path of starting out as grad assistants, then becoming an assistant coach, then perhaps a coordinator before finally getting a head coaching job. Kill, like many others has done it all, but his first football job was as a head coach. He got his successful start right here in Missouri, coaching Webb City. His career record is 152-98.
He is in his fourth year at Minnesota and 21st overall of being a head college football coach in 2014. The Gophers were 3-9 in Kill’s first season in 2011, but reached a bowl game and finished 6-7 in 2012. As history would repeat itself for Kill coached teams, his third year finally brought success to Minnesota. The Gophers finished the season with an 8-5 record. This season, Kill has guided Minnesota to its first back-to-back eight-win seasons since 2002 (eight wins) and 2003 (10 wins). Since 1906, Minnesota has won eight games in consecutive seasons only five times.
Kill served as defensive coordinator and offensive coordinator in two different stops at Pittsburg (Kan.) State University. He helped lead the Gorillas to three NAIA playoff appearances as the defensive coordinator from 1985-87. Kill returned to Pitt State as the offensive coordinator from 1990-93. In that four-year span, the Gorillas advanced to the NCAA Division II Playoffs four times, reaching the championship game twice and winning the 1991 national title.
Sandwiched between his stints at Pittsburg State, Kill was the head coach at Webb City (Mo.) High School. He was 25-1 in two seasons at Webb City and won a state championship in 1989.
At Wednesday’s press conference, Coach Kill looked back fondly on his time at Webb City as he recalls that championship season.
According to GopherSports.com, Kill came to Minnesota after spending three seasons at Northern Illinois in DeKalb, IL. Kill led the Huskies to three consecutive bowl games during his tenure and also coached NIU to a berth the Mid-American Conference Championship game in 2010. Kill was 23-16 in his three seasons with the Huskies.
In four previous stops as a head coach, he has never left a school with a sub-.500 record. In three of his previous four head coaching positions, he took over a team with a losing record and turned in a winning season in three years or less.
Prior to serving as the head coach at NIU, Kill was at Southern Illinois, an FCS program in Carbondale, IL. He spent seven years there and compiled a 55-32 record. Kill’s record over his final five seasons with Southern Illinois was 50-14 and included five consecutive NCAA FCS Playoff appearances.
Kill was the head coach at Emporia (Kan.) State for two seasons in 1999-2000. He went 11-11 with the Hornets, who play at the NCAA Division II level. Prior to Emporia State, Kill was the head coach at NCAA Division II member Saginaw Valley State from 1994-1998. He compiled a 38-14 record with the Cardinals.