KEARNEY – Former University of Nebraska at Kearney coaching great Al Zikmund died this morning at Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney. He was 95. A member of the UNK Hall of Fame, Zikmund spent 32 years at Kearney State College as football coach (1955-71) and athletics director (1971-1987) before retiring in 1987. His football teams amassed a 121-31-3 record, including undefeated seasons in 1956, 1958 and 1967.
His 1963 team played in the NAIA playoffs, and his teams won 11 conference titles. Zikmund played football at the University of Nebraska from 1939-43 and is a member of the Nebraska Football Hall of Fame and Helms Athletic Foundation Hall of Fame. In June, he was placed on the ballot for entry in 2018 to the National Football Foundation College Hall of Fame. He was a member of the 1941 Rose Bowl team and is the youngest player in Rose Bowl history to catch a touchdown pass. Zikmund grew up in Ord, served in the Navy and coached at Alliance High School and Grand Island High School prior to joining Kearney State College. Funeral arrangements are pending.