Gerad Parker
Gerad  Parker

Interim Head Coach


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Gerad Parker was elevated to interim head coach Oct. 16, 2016, taking over for Darrell Hazell, who was relieved of his duties.

Parker is in his fourth season at Purdue. He was hired Feb. 11, 2013, and spent his first two seasons as tight ends coach before becoming wide receivers coach in 2015. He also has served as recruiting coordinator.

Upon being introduced as interim head coach, Parker acknowledged it is a challenging situation, but that he has "an obligation to Purdue University to make sure we put our best foot forward.

"All the stuff that's been instilled in me from playing sports my entire life and how I was raised is going to be the fire for what we chose to do to try to give these guys something they're proud of over the next six weeks. But this isn't about me and my career; this is about those guys in the locker room.

"We have a bunch of good coaches, who have been through the business and have a lot of great ideas. I will lean on those guys, who we know and love and trust and care about."

Athletics director Mike Bobinski picked Parker because, "Gerad handles himself extremely well. He has the respect of his players, and they respond to him in a very favorable way.

"I really thought he had the makings of someone who could provide the sort of shift in tone and direction that we need at this point in time. And everything I've seen today since I shook up his world earlier this morning has done nothing but reinforce that. He's handled himself extremely well in a very difficult circumstance."

In Parker's first season as wide receivers coach, junior DeAngelo Yancey regained the form he displayed as a true freshman. After totaling merely 12 catches as a sophomore, Yancey bounced back with 48 receptions for a team-high 700 yards and five touchdowns. Senior Danny Anthrop led all Boilermakers with 57 receptions in 2015, the most by a Purdue player since Antavian Edison had 58 catches in 2012.

Parker previously worked at Marshall, joining the Thundering Herd coaching staff in the spring of 2011 and spending two years as wide receivers coach. In 2012, Marshall led all Football Bowl Subdivision teams in passing offense with an average of 365.1 yards per game. Wide receiver Tommy Shuler led all FBS players with 9.2 receptions per game and ranked 18th nationally with 94.8 yards per game average. In a Sept. 29 game against Purdue in West Lafayette, Shuler set an opponent record against the Boilermakers with 19 receptions for 200 yards.

Prior to Marshall, Parker spent three seasons at UT-Martin as the Skyhawks' passing game coordinator, recruiting coordinator, wide receivers and running backs coach. He began his collegiate coaching career as a graduate assistant at Kentucky, his alma mater.

A four-year letterwinner for the Wildcats, Parker twice was named to the Southeastern Conference Scholar Athlete Honor Roll (2002 and 2003), was selected the Most Inspirational Player by his teammates (2004) and was the UK Football Scholar Athlete of the Year (2004).

Parker (born Jan. 4, 1981) earned his bachelor's degree in business management in 2003 and his master's in education in 2005, both from Kentucky. He and his wife, Kandi, have three daughters: Kolbi, Gwyneth and Rosalyn.

Interim, Acting Head Coaches

Here is a snapshot of previous interim and acting head coaches with Purdue football:

On Oct. 30, 1912, M.H. "Bill" Horr was dismissed as coach for "improper conduct." John "Keckie" Moll assumed control of the team, and the Boilermakers did not lose the rest of the season, winning three and tying one. Among their victories was a 91-0 demolition of Rose Poly on Nov. 17. In that game, halfback Elmer Oliphant set school records with five touchdowns (in the first year they were worth the modern-day six points), 13 extra points and 43 total points. Moll, who was expected to have his contract renewed, had an offer to become head coach at Ohio State, as well. But he died on Christmas morning of 1912 after a short illness stemming from typhoid fever.

In July of 1937, Noble Kizer was stricken with a kidney disorder. He was granted a leave of absence Aug. 28 and tabbed longtime assistant Mal Elward as interim coach. Kizer staged a remarkable recovery but did not coach again and ultimately succumbed to the illness June 13, 1940, at just 40 years of age. Elward, who led the Boilermakers to a 4-3-1 record in 1937, had the interim tag lifted in the spring of 1938 and continued as head coach through the 1941 season before resigning to enlist in the Navy.

When Danny Hope was relieved of his duties Nov. 25, 2012, wide receivers coach Patrick Higgins was named interim head coach. Higgins coached the Boilermakers in the Heart of Dallas Bowl, a 58-14 loss to Oklahoma State.

Twice, Bob DeMoss served as acting head coach under Jack Mollenkopf and compiled a 4-2 record.

Prior to Purdue's game at Michigan on Oct. 21, 1961, Mollenkopf was sidelined with an intestinal ailment. DeMoss, who was the offensive backfield coach, filled in for two games. The Boilermakers lost to the Wolverines 16-14 but then defeated fifth-ranked Iowa at home 9-0 the following week. DeMoss was honored as Coach of the Week by United Press International.

DeMoss again served as acting head coach for the final four games of the 1968 season when Mollenkopf was hospitalized with acute infectious hepatitis. Purdue posted a 3-1 record, defeating Illinois at home 35-17, losing at Minnesota 27-13, winning at Michigan State 9-0 and beating Indiana 38-35 at home.


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