In an effort to help bring you the most complete and in depth coverage, we’re not only going to bring you our original content, but we’re going to also highlight some of the best writers and sites from across the conference. Each week we’ll highlight at least one story from outside our coverage per school. Today we give you a look at a great article from our friends at Lake The Posts.
No one denies Pat Fitzgerald was thrown into the fire as head coach well before he was ready because of Randy Walker’s sudden death in 2006. That moment shocked everyone. When Northwestern named Pat Fitzgerald head coach, everyone knew the school and athletic program were handing him the keys to the kingdom early. This was the 31-year-old coach-in-waiting who surely needed more time and experience before taking the head mantle.
Fitz has repeatedly stated he would have loved nothing more to have his mentor “Walk” with us to this day and the opportunity to become the head coach at his alma mater has been bittersweet because of the obvious tragic circumstances.
Since the sorrowful beginnings that accompanied his unique head coaching opportunity Pat Fitzgerald has lived a charmed life.
No one could see him rising as quickly as he did — a 2008 Alamo Bowl appearance that started a string of five straight bowl appearances including the monumental win in the 2013 Gator Bowl and the quick ascendancy to the all-time leader in wins at Northwestern University. He went through his growing pains and then found success, building a program with an identity and a good chance to “break through.”
There seemed nowhere to go but up as Fitzgerald’s energy was transforming the football program to a consistent competitor.
And then. . . the house of cards fell.
You can read the full article from Power Poll voter Philip Rossman-Reich here.