Kansas Football Mourns Passing of Bill Young

Kansas Jayhawks

LAWRENCE, Kan. — The Kansas Football program is mourning the loss of Bill Young, who served as the defensive coordinator for the Jayhawks for six seasons and had a brilliant coaching career that spanned more than 50 years.

Young passed away this week at the age of 74.

He directed the Kansas defense from 2002 to 2007, helping guide the Jayhawks to an Orange Bowl victory over Virginia Tech in his final game. Young coached some of the top defensive players in program history, including Aqib Talib, Chris Harris, Darrell Stuckey, Nick Reid, Charles Gordon and others.

Known as the architect of aggressive, physical defenses, Young’s 2005 unit allowed just 83.2 rushing yards per game, which still stands as a program record. In fact, the top three defensive rushing seasons in program history came with Young at the helm in 2005, 2007 and 2006 respectively. The 2007 defense allowed just 16.3 points per game, which was the program’s best mark in more than 30 years.

Young began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at his alma mater, Oklahoma State. He also spent time coaching at Iowa State, Tulsa, Arizona State, Ohio State, Oklahoma, USC, Miami (Fla.) and Wyoming, on top of time as a high school coach. He served as the Tulsa defensive coordinator most recently from 2015-2018.

In addition to his Orange Bowl appearance with the Jayhawks, Young coached in 21 other bowl games in his career.

Services for Young are pending.