LAS CRUCES, New Mexico (KTSM) – Jerry Kill will make $550,000 in base salary in his first season as New Mexico State’s head football coach in 2022, sources with direct knowledge of Kill’s contract told KTSM on Wednesday.

Kill’s full contract is still being finalized by the athletic department, but KTSM has learned that the initial contract is a five-year deal, which would cover the 2022-2026 seasons.

The former head coach Southern Illinois, Northern Illinois and Minnesota, Kill was officially introduced by NMSU on Nov. 29 as the 35th head coach in the history of Aggie football. Over the course of his 23-year career as a head coach at the NCAA Division II, FCS and FBS levels, Kill has generated a 154-101 record while making six bowl game appearances.

Widely-known as the “fix it” coach, Kill, 60, has taken on numerous rebuilds in the past and feels like he is the right guy to do just that at NMSU.

“I just like taking on challenges. It’s like building a house,” said Kill in his introductory press conference. “I like being the underdog, I like having a chip on my shoulder and you get in with the players who have the same thing — great things happen. I just like those challenges, I always have liked the process. I love the process.”

Kill was hired by Minnesota in 2011 where he guided the Gophers to three bowl appearances in five years. He has not been a full-time head coach since 2015 after epileptic seizures caused him to step down at Minnesota. 

He took on an associate athletic director role at Kansas State in 2016, served as Rutgers’ offensive coordinator for part of the 2017 season before health concerns forced him to step away from that job as well. Kill served as a special assistant to the head coach at Virginia Tech in 2019, took the same job in 2020 at TCU under Gary Patterson. He served as the interim head coach for four games with the Horned Frogs in 2021, going 2-2.

According to Kill, he has been seizure-free for four years.

Kill’s first-year salary of $550,000 is more than former NMSU head coach Doug Martin ever made in his nine years in charge of the Aggies. In his final year at New Mexico State in 2021, Martin made $437,000 in base salary.

NMSU Director of Athletics Mario Moccia told the media on Nov. 27 after Martin’s last game that he wanted to at least match Martin’s salary for the next head coach and had conveyed to NMSU leadership that it was necessary to be competitive with other offers Kill might receive for other coaching positions.

This story will be updated when Kill’s full contract is available.