UNLV’s Hauck may be coaching for job Saturday
Sports fodder for a Friday morning . . . UNLV Rebels football coach Bobby Hauck might be coaching for his job Saturday afternoon when the Nevada Wolf Pack comes to town. Hauck, now in his third season as Rebels head coach, has a 5-26 career record since he left the comfort and safety of Division I-AA football in Montana. Yes, we all know that UNLV barely knows it has a football program but 5-26 needs to put any coach on the hot seat. Hauck’s only five victories have come against Wyoming, New Mexico, Hawaii, Colorado State and Air Force. Those are five teams Bishop Gorman High would be favored against. If the Rebels get blasted once again by the Pack on Saturday (for the eighth consecutive time) and finish with another Hauckian two-win season, it’s time to either get another coach or turn Sam Boyd Stadium into another truck stop casino out near Boulder Highway.•••This is the Rebels’ best chance of beating the Pack since Colin Kaepernick became the Nevada starting quarterback starting with the 2008 Fremont Cannon game. UNLV seems to finally have an offense and this Wolf Pack team has a nasty habit of making every game close. The Wolf Pack quarterback situation is also a bit tenuous with starter Cody Fajardo a back spasm away from sitting on the bench. Don’t expect a Wolf Pack blowout — if that happens Hauck should be dumped by Monday morning — but don’t expect the cannon to be painted red anytime soon either.•••What’s in a schedule? Well, just about everything when it comes to building a winning record in college football. The Wolf Pack is 5-1 this year but they haven’t beaten a team that has a winning record right now. The Pack went 7-6 last year and didn’t beat a single team that finished the season with a winning record. Since Chris Ault took over the Pack football program for the third time in 2004, the Wolf Pack has beaten just one team — the 2010 Boise State Broncos who finished 12-1 — that finished the season with fewer than four losses. Ault needs to give Hauck and the Rebels some scheduling pointers.•••Mike Leach, who was fired by Texas Tech in the middle of a scandal over the way he treated a player with a concussion, is at it again at Washington State. Leach, whose Cougars are 2-4 with their only wins coming against Eastern Washington and, yes, UNLV, said some of his seniors are playing like ‘zombies’ and ‘empty corpses.’ You have to love Leach’s honesty. He is trying to change the losing culture at Washington State and he is not going to allow the culture there to change him. Chris Ault would be just as honest if he went to a program like Washington State. That’s how you turn a loser into a winner — with honesty. The Cougars need to listen to Leach.•••There is only one truly great team in the NFL right now and that team is the San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers have a NFL-best plus-81 point differential this year despite losing a game. Atlanta and Houston are both 5-0 but they are doing it with mirrors. The Niners do it with a great defense and an opportunistic, mistake-free offense. Give the 49ers credit for seeing greatness in coach Jim Harbaugh. But it’s about time they hit the coaching jackpot after Dennis Erickson, Mike Nolan and Mike Singletary.•••NFL commissioner Roger Goodell made a mess of the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal from the start and he continues to make it worse. He originally went overboard with the punishments he gave the Saints players and coaches. He then changed his mind and reduced the suspensions for two of the players (Scott Fujita and Anthony Hargrove) and last week he allowed Saints head coach Sean Payton, assistant coach Joe Vitt and general manager Mickey Loomis to take a one-day vacation from their suspensions to attend the Saints game to see quarterback Drew Brees break a record. Fujita was absolutely right this week when he slammed Goodell in the media, saying the commissioner is abusing his power. Right now it’s between Goodell and the NHL’s Gary Bettman for the title of Idiot Commissioner of the Year award.