Back from a vacation in Hawaii, Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck commented publicly for the first time since former U of M football coach Jerry Kill ripped him on satellite radio earlier this week.
Kill, in an interview with SiriusXM's "Big Ten Today," accused Fleck of being all about himself, even going as far as to say Fleck doesn't care about players on the Gopher football team.
"Listen, I’ve got a lot of respect for Jerry Kill, I always will,” said Fleck in a conversation with radio announcer Mike Grimm during halftime of the Gophers-Michigan men's basketball game at Williams Arena on Thursday night.
“I’ve learned so much from him, especially working for him and knowing him a lot of years. I’m really sorry that he feels that way. I’m not sure where that came from."
Fleck continued: "We’re focused on our team. I wish him all the best as he gets in the next journey of his life being an athletic director, and I hope he’s OK.”
Kill, now the full-time athletic director Southern Illinois University, accused Fleck of changing since their days coaching together at Northern Illinois (2007-09).
"I knew his first wife, and he just changed a bunch," Kill said.
Fleck wished Kill "all the best in everything he does," but noted that the public vitriol from Kill saddened him, Heather (his wife) and his children.
"I'm not sure where that all came from. Obviously, that saddens me. It saddened Heather, it saddened our entire family. The one thing that's really important to me is our players. Always has been, always will be," said Fleck.
Since Kill's comments, numerous Gophers football players have come to Fleck's defense.