University of Missouri head coach Gary Pinkel will resign following the conclusion of the 2015 season, the school announced Friday afternoon.
Pinkel, 63, was diagnosed in May with non-Hodgkins lymphoma, a type of blood cancer. Doctors cleared him to return to coaching this season after multiple treatments in May and June
The University of Missouri Athletics released the following information:
University of Missouri Head Football Coach Gary Pinkel will resign his position following the conclusion of the 2015 season, and he will remain as Mizzou’s coach through December 31, 2015, or until a new head coach is in place, as announced today by MU Director of Athletics Mack Rhoades. Pinkel informed his staff and team this evening, and will address questions following Saturday’s game against BYU at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo.
Pinkel’s decision is health-based, as he was diagnosed in May of 2015 with lymphoma, a type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma cancer of the blood. He received multiple treatments in May and June, and after doctors indicated that the treatments wouldn’t interfere with his coaching duties, he decided that he would continue to coach the Tigers in 2015.
“I made the decision in May, after visiting with my family, that I wanted to keep coaching, as long as I felt good and had the energy I needed,” Pinkel said. “I felt great going into the season, but also knew that I would need to re-assess things at some point, and I set our bye week as the time when I would take stock of the future.” he said.
“Words can’t express how grateful I am to the University of Missouri and all of the amazing people who make it up, from the administration to the students and our fans. Obviously, I’m so appreciative to all of my coaches and athletes. Leaving them makes this decision so tough, but I do so feeling good that the Mizzou Football program is in a better place than it was when we came in 15 years ago. I feel that Mizzou is a great job at a great school and has so much going for it that they’ll find an outstanding coach to move the program forward,” Pinkel said.
Pinkel, 63, transformed Mizzou into a national program after taking over on Nov. 30, 2000, and will conclude his career as the winningest coach in school history.
Mizzou wide receiver expressed his sadness on social media:
My heart is full of gold because of the family I’ve grown to know. The Mizzou family. Y’all accepted… https://t.co/WbuwVvPX4n
— L’Damian Washington (@Fe_Verdadera2) November 13, 2015
Pinkel was criticized for comments made in an interview on Kansas City radio station WHB 810 on Tuesday. When asked if he supported the protest group that demanded Wolfe to resign, Pinkel said, “No. Not at all. That had nothing to do with it. It was about a young man that was really struggling. That’s what it was about.”
— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) November 13, 2015
Wish Pinkel the best in health. Still don’t agree with what he said and how he handled his interview with Kevin Kietzman on 810 from Wed.
— Ryan A. Williams (@RyanAlexander_W) November 13, 2015
If I were a #Mizzou football player, I would not be getting on that bus to Arrowhead Stadium. Not after the Gary Pinkel interview.
— Trey in LA (@PoloT_TreyG) November 13, 2015