The Gopher Football staff is complete and it should come as no surprise that the recent hires are all coming to the U from Northern Illinois. Here are the new hires...
Defensive Backs / Special Teams Coordinator - Jay Sawvel
Sawvel has been with Kill for 10 seasons dating back to his Southern Illinois days.
"Jay is an outstanding coach and a tremendous recruiter," Kill said. "He’s a relentless guy. He’s been with me a long time and that’s important."
His special teams has had great success blocking 17 kicks over the last three seasons. Defensively he'll have his work cut out for himself with our young secondary. If he can develop that secondary he may end up being the most valuable assistant on the staff.
Strength and Conditioning Coach - Eric Klein
Eric Klein is a guy that I can’t say enough about," Kill said. "He’s been with me longer than anybody. No disrespect to any of our other coaches, he is the reason we’ve been successful in turning around programs. The reason. The best in the country, in my opinion. There is no doubt in my mind. He is a great strength coach. I’m excited that he’s with us. Without him, we would not be where we’re at. He may be the biggest hire that I’ve made."
Klein has been coaching with Kill for the past 17 years and he is one of us. Klein graduated from Apple Valley High School and was a Knight down at Carleton College.
Offensive Quality Control - Nate Griffing
"Nate and I have close ties," Kill said. "He’s a football guy. He understands the game. Nate will evaluate a lot of the recruiting film from the offensive side. Nate understands what I want."
This is the one guy who is not coming to Minnesota via Northern Illinois. Griffin is coming from Truman State though he was a grad assistant at NIU in 2008 and 2009.
Defensive Quality Control - Brian Anderson
Brian is one of the best evaluators we have in recruiting," Kill said. "He’s coached tight ends and tackles. He’s coached wide receivers. He’s been at the junior college level as a coach. He will evaluate the recruiting film and be a part of that evaluation system. He will work as a pro liaison and also mentor some of our at-risk kids.
"Brian is a guy that I trust a lot," Kill added. "He’s willing to give up being on the field to be a part of this. He’s been very important in the aspect of evaluation of talent and probably a big reason we’ve had the success we’ve had."
Director of Player Personnel - Adam Clark - He will oversee the Gophers’ recruiting efforts.
Director of Recruiting Operations - Billy Glasscock - Glasscock will oversee official visits, walk-on recruiting and other aspects of the recruiting operation.