We’re behind you, coach

Despite occasions of poor health, coach Kill is still able and willing to lead our football team.

by Editorial board

This past Saturday, the Gophers football team closed out their regular season with a 26-10 loss to Michigan State at TCF Bank Stadium. But for half the game Minnesota was without its head coach, Jerry Kill.

Kill suffered a seizure during halftime and didn’t return to the field to coach the second half.

The University of Minnesota community first witnessed the coach collapse on the sideline during the 2011 home opener. He took time away from the program to assess his health and said his seizures are manageable.

After two years with Minnesota, players, coaching staff and even fans have become accustomed to the coach’s recurring seizures — a condition he developed after his bout with cancer in 2005.

While others have questioned the impact Kill’s condition will have on the football program and its reputation, athletics director Norwood Teague told the Star Tribune earlier this week that the program can handle it and pointed to the coach’s record of handling his condition while coaching at Southern Illinois and Northern Illinois, where he went four years without a public seizure.

Teague said Kill plans to learn more about his condition in the offseason in order to make it “more manageable and put this in his rearview mirror.”

We’re proud of Kill’s progress with the Minnesota football program — 6-6 overall record, bowl eligibility and a 3.0 GPA — despite his health issues, and we’re pleased to hear he will continue to explore his condition and management options during the offseason.

Coach Kill has stated many times that players and fans shouldn’t worry about his seizures and isn’t afraid to step back from the program to deal with health issues. Just because his health can be an issue on the field doesn’t make him unable to perform his duty as coach.