Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun
Monday, March 4, 2013 | 2 a.m.
Rebels football 2013
- How many games do you think UNLV football will win in 2013?
- 6 or more — 35.7%
- 5 — 19.4%
- 4 — 16.9%
- 3 — 12.7%
- 2 — 9%
- 0-1 — 6.3%
This poll is closed, see Full Results »
Note: This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
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- UNLV football releases its spring practice schedule
- Former Rebel linebacker fares well at NFL scouting combine
- Former NFL player and coach becomes new UNLV defensive coordinator
- Mountain West releases interdivision matchups in new 12-team format
- Rebel linebacker invited to NFL Scouting Combine
- Two recruits change the landscape of UNLV recruiting class, give Hauck reasons to be optimistic
- All UNLV Football Coverage
With each tough-to-stomach UNLV football loss last fall, Tim Hauck felt the pain.
Hauck, the younger brother of UNLV coach Bobby Hauck, was hired last month to be the Rebels’ defensive coordinator and cornerbacks coach. Although Hauck is new on staff, he has long felt like a part of the program while cheering for his brother from a distance.
Last year, Tim Hauck was the defensive backs coach for the NFL’s Cleveland Browns. On several late Saturday nights on the East Coast, he would follow UNLV games online. It made for some uneasy hours.
“I would stay up late listening to games on the computer and going crazy,” Tim Hauck said. “I always got more nervous for his games than the ones I was coaching. I kind of lived and died with UNLV. Now, it is good to be part of it and hopefully have some positive effect.”
When the Rebels, who have just two wins in each of Bobby Hauck’s three years as coach, hit the field today for the start of spring practice, Tim Hauck will face a daunting task in helping turn UNLV into a winner.
The Rebels’ defense struggled for most of last year, ranking second to last in the Mountain West Conference in total defense and pass defense, eighth in rushing defense and seventh in scoring defense.
But Tim Hauck, 46, isn’t concerned with the past. He’s spent the past month taking inventory of the returning players and feels there are several quality pieces already in place.
“We are in very good shape,” Tim Hauck said. “(UNLV coaches) have done a very good job recruiting. Obviously, it was a complete and total rebuild. I think we are in the position now where we have the skill to be in position to go out and win some football games.”
He typically arrives before 7 a.m. each day at the Lied Athletic Complex on campus. He sits in an office with all white walls — he hasn’t found time to decorate or complete his move, only hanging a few unframed photo of his nieces and nephews — and spends endless hours searching for ways to make over the UNLV defense. There will be new formations next year, none of which the brothers are too anxious to share, and Tim Hauck takes great pride in putting together his playbook.
He spent 13 years playing defensive back in the NFL, then coached in the league with the Tennessee Titans and Browns. He also spent one year coaching with UCLA (2008) and four years (2004-07) on Bobby Hauck’s staff at Montana. He’s played in and helped design several schemes that have been successful — several of which will be in the Rebels’ defensive playbook.
Some of the terminology and formations will remain the same from last year, but much will change. That makes the 15-session spring practice extremely important in changing the defense.
“We are going to be very diverse,” Tim Hauck said of the defensive formations. “I don’t think you can sit in one front and one defense all game long the way the college game has gone. You just can't sit back there and let them take it to you. You have to be aggressive, do different things and attack them in different ways so offense isn’t dictating what you do.”
The brothers are similar in their coaching philosophies, borrowing several techniques from their father, Bob Hauck Sr., a high school coaching legend in the family’s native Montana. The late Hauck Sr. spent more than three decades at Sweet Grass High, where he coached Bobby and Tim and made a lasting impression on how to manage a program.
“Being naturally analytical probably comes from my dad,” Bobby Hauck said. “The competitiveness certainly comes from him, and hopefully wanting to be a good person and doing things for the right reason.”
Tim Hauck turned down higher-paying jobs at more successful programs and in the NFL to come to UNLV. That’s a good thing for the Rebels’ secondary, which was criticized at times last year for poor play.
With Tim Hauck, they’ll be taught by someone who played the position for more than a decade at football’s highest level, giving the new coach instant credibility with his players. Now, it will be their job to learn and take those skills into game situations.
“They had times last year where they didn’t hold up their end of the bargain, and we can’t have those breakdowns,” Tim Hauck said of the UNLV defensive backs. “We have to be sound in what we do, and we can’t give up the big play because it is a mental error. If it is a physical error, so be it. But it can’t be because we are making mental mistakes.”
From enjoying fishing in Montana to their mannerisms when talking, there are much similarities with the brothers. They hope coaching a winning football team at UNLV will be added to the list.
It’s no secret that Bobby Hauck, whose 6-32 record at UNLV is mostly credited to struggles while playing inexperienced players too early out of necessity in his initial two seasons, needs to have a winning season to maintain his position as the Rebels’ coach. Bobby Hauck trusts his brother can transform the defense.
“It is good from a lot of aspects,” Bobby Hauck said of the hire. “From the personal aspect, it is a pretty cool. From the getting-the-job-done aspect, it is a pretty good deal for our program to have someone of his experience to come in and do this. We all know he had more lucrative opportunities and chose to be here with us.”