In a critical radio interview, Kill says the Gophers coach, Fleck, "changed a bunch"



Former Gophers football coach Jerry Kill said Tuesday in front of national radio that the current coach, P.J. Fleck, "was talking about himself" and not his players.

"He trained with me, but after that, you know, he has changed a lot, I'm just going to be honest with you guys," Kill told host AJ Hawk and Matt Schick about Sirius XM College Sports.

Fleck, who could not be reached for comment, spent two seasons under Kill's command in northern Illinois before joining Greg Schiano's staff at Rutgers in 2010.

"People who have known him before – when he had with Schiano … his personality has changed a lot," Kill said. "And I knew his first wife, and he just changed a bunch."

In 2012, Fleck became the head coach of West Michigan at age 32.

"I helped him get the job in western Michigan, and I sometimes think that the ego wins," Kill said.

Kill, 57, now South Illinois' sports director, resigned from his Gophers coaching position in 2015 for health reasons. Minnesota sacked its replacement, Tracy Claeys, after a 9-4 season in 2016, which included a multi-player sexual assault scandal.

The Gophers then hired Fleck, who had just led West Michigan to a 13-1 season and a place in the Cotton Bowl. In taking office in Minnesota, Fleck called himself "a guy from Kill".

Minnesota scored 5-7 under Fleck in their first season and 7-6 last year, including their first win over Wisconsin since 2003 and a Quick Lane Bowl win over Georgia Tech.

"When he went to Minnesota and treated people like he did with me," Kill told them, "and told them that he had to go and change the culture completely, and that it was It was a bad culture and bad people, you know, it gave the impression that we did not know what we were doing, and I took that for myself.

"You do not care for people who have been with you and have helped your career, and you do not even talk to them once you've found the job."

Kill said the two men spoke shortly after the Gophers hired Fleck.

"Yes, and it will be the last time," says Kill. "Am I still looking for Gophers Yes, do I like running behind the scenes?

"Do I think it's about players? No. It's about himself."

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