Coaching Hot Seat Rankings - WAC
Fresno State head coach Pat Hill
Fresno State head coach Pat Hill
Posted Apr 5, 2010

Which coaches are on the hottest seats? Beyond just the idea of a coach possibly being fired for not winning, the rankings are also based on who's under the most pressure. Ranking all the WAC coaches and how much pressure they're under.

2010 Spring Preview
Coaching Hot Seats - WAC

2010 Spring Preview 
- No. 20 Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 1-10) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 11-20) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 21-30) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 31-40) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 41-50)  
- No. 19 Is this it for the Big 12? 
- No. 18 Just how close the Big East has come to a BCS title?
- No. 17 Did ACC expansion work?
- No. 16 Why does the Pac 10 need USC to be good?
- No. 15 Just how hot is the Big Ten for expansion? 
- No. 14 Does the SEC title = BCS title? 
- No. 13 What's going to make you grouchy? 
- No. 12 The new superstars 
- No. 11 Ranking all 120 coaches and their hot seat status 

- ACC CoachesBig East Coaches | Big Ten Coaches | Big East Coaches
- Big 12 Coaches | C-USA Coaches | Ind CoachesMAC Coaches | M-West Coaches
- Pac 10 Coaches | SEC Coaches | Sun Belt Coaches | WAC Coaches 

By Pete Fiutak  

A hot seat isn't always what the media makes it out to be. When a coach is on the proverbial hot seat, usually it means he needs to win now or he'll be fired, but it could also mean a lot more. It could mean a coach needs to start winning because he's under pressure (Mark Richt), but isn't under real threat of being fired. It could mean he's winning, but is in an impossible situation and can't afford a slip (Jim Tressel after last year's loss to Purdue). Or it could mean he needs to win big just because he does (Urban Meyer).

So keeping in mind that for this, Hot Seat doesn't necessarily mean win-or-get-fired and it's more about who's under a lot of pressure (and yeah, in some cases it is a win-or-else situation), here's the ranking of the all 120 coaches and where they fit in on the warm butt scale.

Ranked from highest to lowest on the pressure scale

Pat Hill, Fresno State
Joe Paterno, Frank Beamer, and Troy's Larry Blakeney. Those are the only three coaches to be at their current jobs longer than Hill has been at Fresno State. While he has given the program a swagger and an identity, the problems against Boise State and the one bowl win in the last five years have cranked up the pressure. It's one thing to win big non-conference games, but the Bulldogs haven't done enough in WAC play.
Status: Forget about winning a WAC title; Fresno State hasn't been higher than second since 2003. Hill needs to come up with a strong year to prove that his tenure hasn't grown a bit stale.

DeWayne Walker, New Mexico State
This close to getting the UCLA job after coaching the team in the 2007 Las Vegas Bowl loss to BYU, Walker was considered a good get for New Mexico State. While the pressure might not be too intense for a program coming off the Hal Mumme era, Walker has to show that there's some sign of life after a 3-10 season.
Status: This is considered a stepping-stone job for a coach as respected as Walker, but that only works if his teams do something. He'll get a free pass for last year, but it's the WAC; there's no excuse to only win one conference game.

Greg McMackin, Hawaii
McMackin has had the unenviable task of replacing June Jones, and while he got the team close last year with a nice second half run, the blowout loss to Wisconsin ended the bowl hopes. Hawaii tasted a BCS game three years ago and losing seasons aren't going to be handled well.
Status: The off-the-field issue with a slur against Notre Dame didn't help. He has two years to show he can produce.

Sonny Dykes, Louisiana Tech
Dykes was a baseball player at Texas Tech and worked his way up the ranks to finally get a shot at a head coaching gig. The son of Spike Dykes, the former Red Raider head man, has the family name and has coached some strong offenses over the last few years. If nothing else, the spread attack will be interesting.
Status: It's not like Derek Dooley set the world on fire in his three seasons in Ruston. Dykes will get plenty of time to show what he can do.

Gary Andersen, Utah State
There's finally a reason for a little bit of excitement after years of struggling under Brent Guy. Andersen came to the program as a well-respected defensive coordinator from Utah, but it's his offense that has made the Aggies interesting. 4-8 might not seem like much, but there's good potential.
Status: Utah State was extremely patient with Guy, and it'll give Andersen several chances to show what he can do.

Mark MacIntyre, San Jose State
A nice get for the program, MacIntyre comes over from Duke and the NFL to bring some fresh blood. Dick Tomey did everything he could to make San Jose State competitive, but MacIntyre is a defensive coach who should turn the pressure up even more.
Status: MacIntyre will get several chances to make one of the toughest situations in college football productive. He has to generate more fan interest, and that only comes from winning.

Robb Akey, Idaho
Akey's first two seasons produced just three wins and 21 losses, along with last place finishes in the WAC, but his teams always played extremely hard and never gave up. That feistiness came through last season when his Vandals were among the biggest surprises in college football with an 8-5 year and a thrilling bowl win over Bowling Green.
Status: After so many disastrous seasons, Idaho found a coach who can produce a bowl win. Last year bought Akey at least two more years, maybe three, even if 2009 was a fluke.

Chris Ault, Nevada
The hall-of-famer has put together a devastating offense with his "Pistol" attack ripping apart defenses at a record pace. However, for all the success and all the good things the Wolf Pack have done, the last four bowl losses have been disastrous. However, Nevada has become the second best program in the WAC behind Boise State.
Status: 206-95-1. Ault is an all-timer of a head coach, even if he's not known by anyone outside of the WAC. He can stay as long as he wants to.

Chris Petersen, Boise State
It's asking a lot to step in and improve upon what Dirk Koetter and Dan Hawkins were able to do, but Petersen has created his own special legacy in just four short years. The foundation was set, and Petersen has built on it going 49-4 in with three WAC titles, two BCS bowl wins, and two perfect seasons. How dominant has Boise State been? Under Petersen it's 31-1 in WAC play (the lone loss coming to Colt Brennan and Hawaii in 2007).
Status: That Petersen is still in Boise is a major miracle, but after Koetter's struggles at Arizona State and Hawkins' flop at Colorado, there's something to be said for sticking around and winning big year after year.