Justin Fuente has hired former Big Ten Coach of the Year Jerry Kill as Special Assistant to the Head Coach, according to a press release from Virginia Tech. Kill, the former head coach at Minnesota, had a career head coaching record of 152-99 before recurring seizures ended his head coaching career.
“Jerry Kill will serve as a tremendous resource for our football program,” Fuente said. “Coach Kill possesses over three decades of expertise and will be great addition to our staff. In addition to over 20 years of experience as collegiate and high school head coach, he’s served as a coordinator on both sides of the ball. He can dissect the game from virtually every angle and will be able to provide his unique perspective on everything from recruiting, to personnel and facilities.
“After Coach Kill spent some time with our staff during preseason camp, it was apparent that he possesses a passion for being involved with a football program on a daily basis,” Fuente continued. “I have all the respect in the world for Coach Kill. I’m excited that he’ll be an integral part of our program at Virginia Tech and can’t wait for him to get on campus.”
Kill has been a head coach at four different programs, most recently at Minnesota. Before that, he was head coach at Northern Illinois, Southern Illinois, Emporia State and Saginaw Valley State. Before becoming a head coach for the first time in 1994, he had stints as defensive coordinator and offensive coordinator at Pittsburg State. He was most recently the quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator at Rutgers in 2017, and then athletics director at Southern Illinois in 2018. Kill was Big Ten Coach of the Year in 2014 when he led Minnesota to the Citrus Bowl.
“While it was a difficult decision to leave so many wonderful friends and colleagues at Southern Illinois, I am thrilled for the opportunity to join Coach Fuente and his staff at Virginia Tech,” Kill said. “I’ve long appreciated and admired Justin as a coach and teacher of the game. I respect his penchant for identifying talent and helping young men reach their potential. He has assembled a fabulous coaching staff and roster of talented players at Virginia Tech. I can’t wait to help the Hokies in any way I can.”
Kill is close friends with TCU head coach Gary Patterson, for whom Justin Fuente coached from 2007 through 2011. We’ll have more about this hiring in a TSL Pass article this afternoon.