It was shortly after 11am on Thursday, December 14that that Turner Gill was introduced as the 37th head football coach at the University of Kansas; and shortly after noon on Thursday I was sold on him. Gill brings with him a less than stellar coaching record (20-30 at Buffalo), but a hugely impressive aura. He is exuberant, excited, energizing, and he excelled as a player and an assistant coach at Nebraska, the school with the most storied history in the Big 12.
Gill said all of the right things, and as KU AD Lew Perkins said, "can go into any home and recruit any player in the country." His reputation as a players coach is just what Kansas needed; especially after they grouchy Mark Mangino "resigned." Don't get me wrong, I think Mangino is a HELL of a football coach, the guy is just NOT a people person. Gill is. He shook hands with members of the media and boosters, and it made you feel important just to talk to him.
On the other side of that argument, I had a similar feeling about Ron Prince when he was hired. He was a young, good looking, well spoken coach, with ties to the area. We all know how that turned out. For Prince, though, it was his first head coaching gig. Gill cut his teeth at UB, and brings with him 2 MAC coach of the year awards. For KU fans sake, here's hoping he can bring in the kind of recruits and assistant coaches he'll need to compete in a stiff conference.
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