Maybe it’s time. Sometimes it’s hard to say goodbye to something. Especially if you love it. Especially when it defines you. We see it with athletes, and aging head coaches, who just can’t accept it’s time to retire. That’s why I have to say it’s time for University of Minnesota Jerry Kill to retire.
Jerry isn’t old. He’s only 52 and in his 3rd head season as coach of the University of Minnesota. Coaching in the Big 10 is the culmination of a head coaching journey that’s taken him from Saginaw Valley State, Emporia State, Southern Illinois, Northern Illinois and finally to Minnesota. As I sit here watching the battle for the Little Brown Jug, between the University of Minnesota and the University of Michigan, it bothers me that Coach Kill will not be on the sideline today because he suffered his 5th seizure since 2011.
Coach Kill has a history with seizures. His first seizure on the sideline came in 2005, where he was subsequently diagnosed with kidney cancer which he beat. Since that time he was hospitalized for dehydration in 2010, and has suffered 5 seizures on game day since 2011. Many of these seizures have occurred when he was standing on the sidelines. I am no doctor, but the University of Minnesota and the coach’s family should be concerned by his seizure history. They should also be concerned that his seizures occur on game day. To me it looks like the coach gets himself worked up to a point that his body cannot handle it and it crashes on him. At 52 it might be hard to walk away from the game but if you’re body can’t handle it. Maybe it’s time to let it all go.
He’s still young enough to put his energies elsewhere. After his 2005 seizure the Coach started the Coach Kill Cancer Fund foundation to help low income southern Illinois residents afford treatment. That’s a noble cause. As someone who’s seen several family members fight cancer, I know firsthand how expensive medical treatment can be. Pouring his energy into helping people and away from something that is harming him seems like the way to go. I’m a Michigan fan and I want the Wolverines to retain the Little Brown Jug, but I’d be happy if Minnesota won this game for Coach Kill and his family. It’s time for Jerry to walk away from the game, but I wouldn’t be too mad if he walked away with a little brown jug.
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