Former Minnesota Viking linebacker and assistant coach Pete Bercich has been named head football coach at Hill-Murray, the school announced Wednesday.
Bercich, 44, has worked as color analyst for Vikings games on the Vikings Radio Network since 2007. He replaces Rick Fryklund at the Maplewood-based private school.
Bercich, a Viking player for seven years and assistant coach for five seasons, also will be the school’s director of development. He is expected to take part in a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday for a new football stadium at the school.
“One thing I will say about high school football, your high school teammates are the friends you will keep all your life,” Bercich said in a statement released by the school. “In college, you may keep a friend or two. If you play in the NFL, you may keep one or two there as well. Your high school playing days are your glory days. They stay with you with you forever.”
Bercich is the fifth head coach hired by the school since 2011, when it turned to former Viking quarterback Brooks Bollinger. He led the Pioneers to the Class 4A state tournament semifinals in his first and only season before resigned to become the quarterbacks coach at the University of Pittsburgh.
Hill-Murray then hired Mark Mauer, who had coached for seven seasons at Concordia University in St. Paul. Mauer coached the 2012 season and resigned in February 2013 after he was arrested during a prostitution sting in Fridley.
Tony Danna, a Hill-Murray graduate and former University of St. Thomas football player, took over the coaching reins before the 2013 season and led the team in 2014 as well.
Frykland was named head coach in 2015. He graduated from St. Thomas Academy and the University of St. Thomas, where he played football. Previously he had been an assistant football and wrestling coach at St. Thomas Academy.
Bercich, the son of a former NFL player, grew up in Joliet, Illinois and played high school football at Providence Catholic High School. He was a starting linebacker at Notre Dame and graduated in 3½ years with a finance degree.
The Vikings selected Bercich in the seventh round of the 1994 NFL draft. He played linebacker and special teams for seven seasons, then coached for five seasons. He retired in 2005 and became an NFL broadcaster.