The Minnesota Golden Gophers have announced that coach Jerry Kill will take a leave of absence from the team in order to focus on his health. Kill suffers from epilepsy, with his latest episode coming on Saturday before the Michigan game on Oct. 5.
He addressed his health and absence in this statement:
“My wife Rebecca, myself and our two daughters want to thank everyone for their prayers and concerns during the last few weeks. This was a difficult decision to make, but the right decision. Our staff has been together a long time and I have full confidence in Coach Claeys and them during my time away. Every decision that will be made will be in the best interest of the players and the program. I look forward to returning to the Minnesota sideline on a full-time basis soon.”
University President Eric Kaler, who fully supports Kill along with Athletic Director Norwood Teague, had the following response to the unfortunate situation:
“Athletics Director Norwood Teague and Coach Kill are managing this health situation, as it relates to our football program, in the most straightforward and caring manner possible. They are acting in the best interests of this University, its alumni and fans and, most importantly, the student-athletes who have placed their trust in us. I eagerly look forward to Coach Kill’s return and wish him all the best.”
Coach Kill’s professional history of battling epileptic seizures dates back to 2000 when he was with Emporia State University. This is the fifth seizure-related incident Kill has faced since 2011 – the year he took the Minnesota job.
[H/T: CBS Sports]