Gophers give Kill raise and extra year on contract

DAVE CAMPBELL AP Sports Writer Published:

Minnesota has given football coach Jerry Kill a raise and another year on his contract.

The university announced Saturday that Kill's deal was extended through the 2018 season and that he'll make $2.1 million in 2014, a big spike from the previous figure of $1.2 million that was put his salary last among Big Ten coaches. This will push him closer to the middle of the conference in terms of overall compensation.

Athletic director Norwood Teague had promised for months the contract would be restructured.

"Coach Kill is proving his model works here at the University of Minnesota," Teague said in a statement from the school. "It is right to support him as he builds a program that will make the state of Minnesota proud."

The Gophers went 8-5 last year, including a four-game winning streak in conference play for the first time since 1973. They're 17-21 under Kill, who took over in 2011.

"I appreciate the support President Eric Kaler and Athletic Director Norwood Teague have shown to me, the program and our student-athletes," Kill said in a statement from the school. "I am extremely proud of what our players and coaches accomplished on and off the field last season. We still have a lot of work to do but are moving the program in the right direction. I look forward to continuing to build a program that positively represents the great people of Minnesota and am excited to work with our players again when we start spring practice in early March."

The university said Kill and Teague would hold a news conference Monday on campus. They weren't available for further comment.

Kill has been hampered by epilepsy, and seizures forced him to miss a game for the first time last October. He coached much of the season from the press box but after being forced to stay home from the trip to Michigan and spending time at a specialty clinic he didn't have any other publicly known episodes.

Kill returned to the sideline last December for the second half of Minnesota's bowl game, a loss to Syracuse in Houston. He said earlier this month, on national signing day, that he's begun driving again. Minnesota law requires licensed drivers to be seizure-free for at least three months.

The annual average of Kill's earnings over the remaining five years of the contract is $2.3 million. His $600,000 base salary is the same as before, but his supplemental compensation for endorsements, fundraising, media obligations and community involvement bumped up from $600,000 to $900,000.

A supplement retirement contribution clause was also inserted, at $600,000 in 2014 with $100,000 increases annually to bring his scheduled overall compensation figure to $2.5 million in 2018, the final year of the deal.