Gophers coach Jerry Kill released from hospital after seizure
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota Gophers football coach Jerry Kill, who suffered a seizure following his team's loss to Northwestern on Saturday, was released from the hospital Sunday morning, team officials confirmed.
Kill had been kept in the hospital overnight for precautionary observations.
The seizure occurred in the coaches' office of the Gophers' locker room at TCF Bank Stadium shortly after Kill addressed the media at his post-game news conference. He was immediately taken to the hospital.
"He was evaluated yesterday and this morning and all tests confirm that he remains in excellent health," said Gophers' team doctor Pat Smith in a statement. "His only concern is his team and staff, and he is excited to resume his normal coaching duties as Minnesota prepares for Wisconsin this week. He plans to be back in the office tomorrow."
A text was sent to the players last night to alert them to what had happened and also to assure them that Kill was awake and resting comfortably.
Defensive coordinator Tracy Claeys, who has coached under Kill for 17 years, expressed that the episode on Saturday was minor and part of Kill's ongoing battle with seizures.
"Had that happened at home there's no issue here. That's part of the seizure disorder that he acknowledged a year ago," Claeys said Sunday during an interview at the Gophers' practice facility. "Millions of people live with it. It just so happens that during the football season it's more of public-type deal."
"If it happens 30 minutes later at home, it's not a big deal. But when it happens there you have no choice but to get an ambulance involved and take him to the hospital."
Kill has lived with a seizure disorder for nearly 20 years and takes daily medication to combat it.
The incident on Saturday, Claeys said, was not considered to be close to the magnitude of the seizure Kill had on the sidelines during the Gophers' home opener against New Mexico State in 2011. Kill was hospitalized for five days following that episode. At the time, Kill was undergoing a change in medication, which contributed to making the situation worse.
As Claeys reiterated, Kill's staff, the majority of which is made up of coaches who have worked with him at his previous head coaching stops, is well aware of his history. There is a firm understanding throughout the coaching staff of the effects of his disorder and how they should respond if an incident occurs.
"It's part of all of our routines now and what goes on now. Everybody is comfortable with it," Claeys said.
"Most college staffs in America, if you worked for a coach and you were worried about that (disorder) being career threatening everybody would be leaving. I'm being honest. If you worked for a guy and he's worried about, bam, you'd go get a job somewhere else. We've known about. There's not one guy who has left the staff because of it."
Kill is expected to be back in his office on Monday, but Claeys remarked candidly that "it wouldn't surprise me" if he showed up on Sunday afternoon.