by Joe Santoro

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February 10, 2012
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Sports Fodder: Ault preparing for future with staff changes


Sports fodder for a Friday morning . . .

Did Chris Ault just demote himself? The Nevada Wolf Pack head football coach stripped himself of two titles (offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach) this week when he hired 32-year-old Nick Rolovich to take over the pistol offense and tutor the quarterbacks. Maybe the old ball coach is actually serious about his threat of not coaching past his 70th birthday (which will come during the 2016 season) after all. Then again, in his new role without a position to coach or a game plan to devise, he might actually enjoy tooling around the practice field in his silver and blue golf cart and watching games up in a Mackay Stadium luxury box and never retire. The era of Chris Pa at Nevada has officially begun.

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Ault, though, deserves a pat on his back for what he did this week. It couldn't have been easy for him to relinquish those two cherished titles. But by hiring Rolovich he has taken a drastic step to insuring the future of the pistol offense. He needed someone on his staff he could teach the finer points of the offense for the day when he does decide to step down. Rolovich, Hawaii's offensive coordinator the past two years, seems like a great choice. He'll certainly pump new life into the Pack passing game. And it's about time. After seven seasons, it was imperative for Ault to finally take a drastic step to clean out his pistol before it blows up in his face. Ault, the creator, founder, caretaker and granddaddy of the pistol offense since its inception in 2005, has finally admitted he is no longer Billy The Kid and needs some new ideas and fresh blood.

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Is Rolovich going to be the Wolf Pack's next head coach? Will athletic director Cary Groth allow Ault to name his own successor? And will Rolovich even stick around long enough to find out? Rolovich wasn't retained by new Hawaii coach Norm Chow in December. He then spent the past month as the University of Massachusetts new offensive coordinator (though he didn't actually sign a contract, according to reports). And now he's in Nevada. He went from Chow to chowder to the chosen one in about 60 days. If he truly wants to become the next Pack head coach he is going to have to be very patient. Very patient, indeed.

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It will be an interesting transition from Ault to Rolovich, to say the least. Will Ault truly allow Rolovich to call all the plays? Can Rolovich check his ego at the door and run Ault's efficient pistol offense and resist the urge to run that Hawaii blunderbuss scattershot pass crazy offense that fires scrap iron, rocks, wood chips and old bits and pieces of forks and knives in a single shot with the hope that something eventually hits the target? Welcome to Pistol U. with Professor Ault, Nick. Be patient. Be very patient.

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Why hasn't Bill Belichick received more criticism for allowing the New York Giants to score the go-ahead touchdown with under a minute to play in the Super Bowl? Who deliberately gives up a lead in the Super Bowl with under a minute to play? The losing coach in the Super Bowl, that's who. Anything can happen on a field goal attempt. Bad snap. Bad hold. A penalty. A fumble. A blocked kick. The kicker stubs his toe in the turf. The football Gods blow the ball wide right or left. And even if the Giants would have made the kick, Tom Brady would have only had to get a field goal to win. The media needs to stop kissing Belichick's hoodie.

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Major league baseball needs to settle the Oakland Athletics' proposed move to San Jose as soon as possible and allow the A's to move south. Oakland has never appreciated the A's, even in the World Series years.  The Oakland Coliseum is a horrible place for baseball, ever since Al Davis ruined it in the mid 1990s by erecting Mount Davis. The San Francisco Giants, though, own the territorial rights to San Jose. So what? There are two teams in Chicago and New York and two in the Los Angeles area. Giants fans in San Jose won't suddenly start wearing the green and gold. Can't we all just get along?

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It seems like Conference USA and the Mountain West Conference are serious about merging. Why not? Who wouldn't want to add Southern Mississippi, Tulsa, Marshall, Rice, Alabama-Birmingham, Tulane, East Carolina and UTEP to Nevada, Fresno State, Hawaii (football only), New Mexico, Wyoming, Colorado State, Air Force and UNLV. Makes perfect sense, doesn't it? Fake rivalries. Fake championships. That's the essence of college football these days, folks.

 


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The Record Courier Updated Feb 10, 2012 04:06PM Published Feb 10, 2012 04:02PM Copyright 2012 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.