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1st Tuesday Luncheon // August 1, 2017
University of Minnesota Football Coach P.J. Fleck
P.J. Fleck enters his first season as the University of Minnesota’s football coach this fall. At 36, he is considered one of the youngest and brightest coaching minds in college football after taking a previously dormant Western Michigan program to unprecedented heights.
Before being named the 30th head football coach in U of M history in January, Fleck engineered a staggering four-year turnaround at Western Michigan. The Broncos went 1-11 in his first year in 2013; last season, they went 13-1, winning the Mid-American Conference (MAC) title and earning a berth in the Cotton Bowl. Fleck was named MAC Coach of the Year for the second time, FBS Region 3 Coach of the Year by the American Football Coaches Association, and was a finalist for two national coach of the year awards.
Off the field, Western Michigan had a program-record seven student-athletes named to the 2016 MAC Distinguished Scholar Athlete team.
Fleck’s coaching career includes stints with the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Rutgers, Northern Illinois, and Ohio State. He played receiver at Northern Illinois, where he was a first-team All-MAC selection and finished in the top five in school history in career receptions and receiving yards. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education in 2004 before playing in the NFL for the San Francisco 49ers for two seasons.