Jon Kitna Named Football Coach at Lincoln High School

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January 26, 2012

By Bill Boehlke

Jon Kitna

Jon Kitna played for the Seahawks from 1997-2000 – Jon at his news conference at Lincoln High School

Former Seahawks quarterback Jon Kitna was a three-sport athlete at Tacoma’s Lincoln High School, playing football, basketball and baseball before graduating in 1991. And on January 26, 2012, he returned to his alma matar as the school’s new football coach.

Kitna, who retired on January 12 after a 15-year career as an NFL quarterback, including four years (1997-2000) with the Seahawks, returned to Lincoln earlier in the week as a part-time math teacher. He graduated from Central Washington University with a degree in math education. Kitna also went on to lead Central to the NAIA National Football Championship in 1995.

Kitna’s path to the NFL began when he led the Barcelona Dragons to the 1997 World Bowl Championship, and being named the World’s Most Valuable Player in NFL Europe.

His NFL career began when he made the Seahawks as an undrafted free agent in 1997, backing up Warren Moon his first year and most of 1998 before starting the final five games of the season. In 1999 he started 15 games for the Seahawks, leading them to a 9–7 record and winning the AFC West. After four seasons with Seattle, Kitna went on to play in Cincinnati (2001-2005), Detroit (2006-2008) and Dallas (2009-2011).

At a news conference to introduce him as the new football coach, Kitna talked about his desire to coach a high school football team.

“My wife and I always felt like these years in the NFL have prepared us for what our real calling in life is going to be, as teachers and running a high school football program,” Kitna said.

Kitna also spoke about using sports to produce men of integrity and future leaders. And he stated an ambitious and inspiring goal to turn Lincoln into one of the top football programs in the Northwest.

“A program that will be relevant and competitive state wide within five years,” he said, “and nationally within 10 years.”

Kitna said the team will no longer run the Wing-T, but he didn’t want to reveal what type of offense he’ll install.

“I know what I want to do and I’ve already got the playbook,” he said.” I just don’t want to let it out yet.”

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