In college football, fit matters. There may be no better fit than Pat Fitzgerald leading Northwestern’s program.

The former Wildcats linebacker-turned-head coach understands the culture, and the challenges, that come with coaching at a place like Northwestern. And, despite the program’s unsuccessful history on the gridiron, Fitzgerald has developed the program into a consistent winner, a frequent bowl team and, most recently, a division champion.

Northwestern is 96-70 in 13 seasons with Fitzgerald at the helm, appearing in nine bowl games and hitting the 10-win mark three times in that stretch. He’s been a hot candidate for other high-profile coaching jobs around college football and the NFL. Most recently, his name was in the running to become the next head coach of the Green Bay Packers.

Like most potential job opportunities, though, Fitzgerald scoffed at the idea of leaving his alma mater.

“This is my dream job,” Fitzgerald said in an interview with 670 The Score. “There’s no reason why I’d want to coach anywhere else.”

Not many coaches aspire to run a program like Northwestern for their entire careers. Usually, a program like Northwestern is a stepping stone opportunity. If you’re successful in Evanston, you might have a chance to be successful at one of the blueblood programs in college football.

Fitzgerald doesn’t view it that way, though. He believes he’s a perfect fit for the program. His record and success on the field have backed that up.

“My commitment is to be here,” Fitzgerald said. “I’d love to have the opportunity to have my kids go to the same grade schools, the same high schools and be around these types of players. For my sons, our players are their role models. I wouldn’t want our (children) to look up to no other group of guys than our guys.

“I just really think I fit. The values of the university fit what I believe in. Hopefully they feel as strongly.”

Fitzgerald is only 44 years old and has plenty of coaching in front of him. After leading Northwestern to a division title last season, the goal is to now take it to the next step and win a B1G championship.

That’s exactly what Fitzgerald and the Wildcats are striving to accomplish this fall.

“Unfinished business,” he said. “Not to get accomplished what we wanted to get accomplished, ultimately, and to be so close is an incredible motivator.”