Jerry Kill to take over athletics department

Former Southern Illinois football coach Jerry Kill is taking over the athletics department, effective immediately.

SIU Carbondale chancellor Carlo Montemagno made the move Thursday after deciding not to renew athletic director Tommy Bell's contract, which expires next month. Montemagno said it is time "to make a change in leadership that will help the program fulfill its potential."

Kill's oversight of the department will begin immediately. He is not the interim athletic director, the school said, but is adding oversight of athletics to his duties.

Kill coached at SIU from 2001 until 2007, leading the Salukis to a 55-32 record, five straight FCS title games and three straight Gateway Conference championships. He won the Eddie Robinson National Coach of the Year Award in 2004.

He also coached at Northern Illinois and Minnesota, where he was named 2014 Big Ten Coach of the Year before seizures caused by his epilepsy forced him to step down after four-plus seasons and a 29-29 record (14-21 Big Ten). The Golden Gophers went to three bowl games during Kill's tenure.

Kill has dealt with epilepsy his entire career, and he missed two Gophers games in 2013 while undergoing treatment.

He went on to become an associate athletic director for Kansas State in 2016 and returned to coaching shortly after, signing on as offensive coordinator at Rutgers for the 2017 season.

After suffering several seizures while with the Scarlet Knights, including one in the football office on Sept. 10, 2017, Kill quietly stepped away on Sept. 19.

He returned to SIU in March as a special assistant to Montemagno.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.