Blue Devils Add Another To Football Staff

John Gutekunst, a former Duke football captain with 40 years of college coaching experience, will return to his alma mater as an assistant coach, Blue Devil head coach Ted Roof announced on Wednesday.

"John has had an outstanding career as a coach and his vast experience will certainly add to our staff," Roof said. "His passion and love for Duke were very obvious during the interview process. He is a great addition to our staff."

A veteran coach who guided the Minnesota program for six seasons, Gutekunst played both baseball and football at Duke before graduating in 1966. He joined the coaching profession following graduation and served on the Duke staff from 1967-78.

Prior to the 1979 campaign, Gutekunst joined the staff at Virginia Tech where he helped the Hokies to a five-year ledger of 36-20 from 1979-83. He then served as defensive coordinator and secondary coach under Lou Holtz at Minnesota during the 1984-85 seasons before beginning a six-year tenure as the head coach of the Gophers (1986-91). In 1986, he led Minnesota to the Liberty Bowl in a season that was highlighted by a 20-17 upset victory over then second-ranked and previously unbeaten Michigan. He also was the Gophers' head coach in a 20-13 triumph over Clemson in the 1985 Independence Bowl.

After coaching one season with the Tampa Bay Storm of the Arena Football League, Gutekunst moved back to the college ranks for one-year stints at Wake Forest (1992) and South Carolina (1993). He then was the defensive coordinator at Rutgers from 1994-95 and coached the defensive backs and kickers at Rhode Island from 1996-98.

In 1999, Gutekunst reunited with Holtz and returned to South Carolina for five seasons (1999-03), coaching the Gamecock defensive secondary. In 2000, the Gamecocks posted 20 interceptions while allowing a league-low five touchdown passes. Defensive back Sheldon Brown was named to the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) All-America team while Gutekunst earned Assistant Coach of the Year accolades from the same organization.

In 2001, South Carolina's defense ranked second in the SEC as two defensive backs — Brown and Andre Goodman — received all-league honors and were later selected in the 2002 NFL Draft. Gutekunst also coached All-SEC cornerback Dunta Robinson, who was chosen with the 10th overall selection by Houston in the 2004 NFL Draft.

Gutekunst served three seasons (2004-06) at North Carolina, coaching the linebackers as a co-defensive coordinator in 2004 before switching to the tight ends for his final two years. He added the responsibilities of assistant head coach in 2006.

At Duke, Gutekunst lettered on the gridiron from 1963-65 under Hall of Fame head coach Bill Murray and served as team captain as a senior. He also earned three varsity letters on the baseball diamond from 1964-66.

A native of Sellersville, Pa., Gutekunst and his wife, Leah, have three sons, Brian, Michael and Jon, and four grandchildren, Molly, Marley, Joie and Sam.


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