Jerry Kill suffers another seizure, will not coach at Michigan
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Minnesota Gophers coach Jerry Kill won't be on the sidelines for the Gophers' match-up at Michigan after suffering an epileptic seizure on Saturday morning,
After not feeling well on Friday, Kill chose to stay behind in Minneapolis as the team traveled to Michigan. Kill, who has epilepsy, had plans to rejoin his team on Saturday, but instead he endured his latest epileptic episode in the morning.
"Coach was not feeling well yesterday, so he did not come with us on the trip," University of Minnesota athletics director Norwood Teague said Saturday on the Gophers Radio Network. "Then he had a seizure this morning and decided not to come. He's at home resting and we're moving forward."
In Kill's place, defensive coordinator Tracy Claeys will take over the head coaching duties from the press box. Per team procedure, defensive backs coach Jay Sawvel and tight ends coach Rob Reeves will manage the on-field responsibilities. The bulk of Kill's assistants have been with him for numerous years, on his staff throughout his battle with epilepsy in the last decade.
This is the fifth documented seizure Kill has suffered on a game day during his three-year tenure with the Gophers, and second this season.
Kill underwent a seizure Sept. 14 on the sidelines at halftime of the Gophers game against Western Illinois at TCF Bank Stadium. Without Kill, the Gophers went on to mount a second half rally to defeat the Leathernecks. Following that episode, Kill said he had no intention of coaching from the press box and that it wouldn't make any difference,
Teague noted Kill was at every practice during the Gophers' preparations for Michigan this week. Teague, now in his second year at the helm of the Gophers athletics department, said the program would continue to monitor the situation in the coming days.
"I know it's so frustrating for him," Teague said. "This is a setback for him. We have a bye week next week, so we'll keep managing it going forward."
Meanwhile, the Gophers, 19-point underdogs for Saturday's game, will attempt to win without Kill against the Michigan Wolverines, who they have defeated only once in their last 22 meetings.
Teague was with the team in the morning and in the locker room, reporting no negative effects.
"The kids are resilient," Teague said. "They're ready to roll like they always are. As we've said before, Jerry's staff has been the most cohesive staff in all of college football, as far as the time they've been together. Tracy Claeys and Matt Limegrover, both coordinators, get things together and we're ready to play Michigan."