Koloskie says coaches can’t be judged solely by wins and losses

UNLV interim athletic director gets earful from fans after football team’s loss to UNR


Rob Miech

UNLV interim athletic director Jerry Koloskie.

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  • UNLV interim athletic director Jerry Koloskie on the role he’s played in the Las Vegas community for the past two months.

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  • Koloskie on if the interim period is an audition.

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  • Koloskie on his interest in the permanent position.

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  • Koloskie on the aftermath of the UNLV football team’s 63-28 loss at UNR.

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  • Koloskie on having the power, at any time, to do what he sees fit to improve any program in the department.

Jerry Koloskie’s adoration of The Three Stooges has served him very well lately.

The UNLV interim athletic director’s world has been turned upside down. He can’t locate his shirts. He can’t find the black belt to match the black oxfords. Forks and knives are somewhere.

“It’s really been a stressful time,” Koloskie said in his spacious office late Thursday morning. “Everything is out of sorts. This past week or so has been pretty tough.”

He and his wife, Annette, are moving. They closed on their new house last Friday, after he landed in Reno, and are settling into the new digs a few minutes away from the old one in Green Valley.

As disheveled as his personal life has been, Koloskie knows exactly where those prized Stooges tapes are – in a brown box next to the big screen in the former pad.

Now, about that Larry, Mo & Curly act at UNR, an ugly 63-28 defeat to the Wolf Pack that has caused a volcano of criticism to erupt around fifth-year UNLV football coach Mike Sanford.

Koloskie saw the raw disappointment etched on the faces of Sanford and his assistants in the locker room after the debacle. The Rebels (2-3, 0-1 in the Mountain West Conference) are 13-39 under Sanford.

As affable, mild-mannered and pleasant as Koloskie appears, he confirmed that he has the power, at any time, to make any move that is in the best interest of the UNLV athletic department.

That’s why, Koloskie said, Dr. Neal Smatresk, UNLV’s new president, appointed him interim athletic director.

“I would hope the president would take my recommendation, yeah,” Koloskie said. “I mean, that’s why he put me in this position. I’ve been a part of hiring coaches and, unfortunately, I’ve been a part of terminating coaches.

“I’ve done it. I have the experience to do it again.”

Coal miner’s son

The only child of a West Virginia coal miner and his wife, Jerry Koloskie grew up in Monongah, W. Va., where current Alabama coach Nick Saban developed his intensity.

Saban helped now-defunct Monongah High win two state titles in the late 1960s. Koloskie won a championship with the Lions in 1973.

Koloskie remembers looking out his bedroom window at the Monongah practice field and marveling over a sole figure – Saban – running sprints during summers when Saban came home from Kent State.

When Koloskie realized he wouldn’t make it in pro baseball, he focused on athletic training, earning his bachelor’s degree at West Virginia and a master’s from Iowa State.

He has been a fixture at UNLV since 1982.

His father, John, set an example by never missing a day of work in the Loveridge Coal Mine in Fairview. After a month of the day shift, he went to the night shift. A month later, he was on the midnight shift.

Then it was back to the day shift, and so on and so on.

John Koloskie, now 83 and golfing three times a week, never complained about the labor. He has a mild form of black lung, said Jerry, whose mother Julia is in poor health.

“You can sit around at home in a bar with 25 coal miners and very seldom would they talk about their jobs,” Jerry Koloskie said. “Like servicemen, they never talk of the mines.

“To this day, I never really knew what dad did in the mines. He never talked of how much coal they mined or what happened. He was a silent role model. It gave me that drive.”

To the forefront

Koloskie has mostly operated silently, and behind the scenes, at UNLV.

He taped former quarterback Randall Cunningham’s ankles. He was a trainer during the Rebels’ run to the NCAA basketball championship in 1990.

Even as a senior associate athletic director, he laid down chalk lines on the baseball field and directed an athletic-apparel clearance sale that netted the department $50,000 last spring.

Now, with Mike Hamrick’s departure to Marshall two months ago, the 52-year-old Koloskie, who has spent more than half his life at UNLV, is the leader of the athletic department.

Academics, the budget and some structural reorganization have been his main charges.

A graduation rate around 60 percent should come in closer to 70 when the next figures are tabulated, he said, and the economic downturn demands constant attention to the bottom line.

Hamrick-led cost containment that resulted in $500,000 in savings must be monitored closely, Hamrick told Koloskie with perhaps his most important advice before leaving.

“We have to look at what we need as opposed to what we want,” Koloskie said. “If we do that, we’ll be OK. If revenue numbers hit where they should be and we minimize our expenses, we’ll be all right.”

Part of his Rebel Athletic Fund restructuring involves the reinstatement of sport-specific contributions. He has challenged coaches with sports-specific community initiatives.

He wants someone who gives a dollar to the RAF to feel as involved with UNLV athletics as someone who contributes $100,000.

Koloskie said he will soon reveal an alteration of the athletic ticket department, to make it more customer-service oriented. He said his initial fundraising efforts have been more about “friend-raising.”

“Trying to create a positive atmosphere,” Koloskie said. “Most importantly, making people in the community understand that this is their athletic department. It’s not mine.

“And we need to support our student-athletes, because that’s why we’re all here.”

The hot seat

Sanford’s job security is the hot-button issue of the week. He is making $425,000 a year through 2012. He would be paid $287,500 if he gets sacked before Dec. 4. After that, the buyout clause drops to $225,000.

Koloskie said he has received “quite a few” phone calls and e-mails this week from disgruntled fans.

“And I want to say this, some have been supportive,” Koloskie said. “Not all have been negative. People understand the trials and tribulations. We’re dealing with 19-year-old kids.

“Nobody feels worse than our student-athletes, in any of our sports, when they lose. Kids put their hearts and souls into being successful. I’ve gotten both pros and cons. That’s to be expected.”

In evaluating Sanford, Koloskie said it’s vital to know everything about the coaches, the atmosphere of the team, the morale and the character of the players, and who’s being recruited.

“You have to know all those things to make the best decision for the department,” he said. “A lot of times, it can’t just be predicated on wins and losses. Most of the time, in the visible sports, it usually is.

“If you’re a good athletic director, or administrator in an athletic department, you have to know the totality of the program to make the best decision.”

A victory over 18th-ranked BYU (4-1, 1-0) on Saturday night at Sam Boyd Stadium, Koloskie said, would boost hopes that the Rebels could rally toward bowl eligibility.

“I know coach Sanford understands that the expectations are for him to win and get to a bowl game this year,” Koloskie said. “But being in an athletic department, that’s our expectation every year.”

Koloskie is indeed hopeful. He knows the effort being put into the team, how Sanford runs his program and how hard the players are working.

“Unfortunately,” Koloskie said, “I can’t control the results.”

The show must go on

Smatresk, adhering to Nevada System of Higher Education code, will undergo a national search to identify a permanent athletic director. He told the Sun that should begin in the spring.

South Point Arena general manager Steve Stallworth, a former UNLV quarterback, and Las Vegas Bowl director Tina Kunzer-Murphy are considered top local candidates.

Former Hawaii athletic director Herman Frazier, whom Smatresk knows from his time on the island, might get a call. UNLV basketball coach Lon Kruger will play a key role in the process.

Koloskie has no illusions. He hasn’t moved the bulk of his files from his former office into the athletic director’s confines. Why, if he’ll ultimately need to move them back?

Make no mistake, however. He wants the job.

“If I do a really bad job, I’m assuming it’ll stick out like a sore thumb,” Koloskie said. “I just want what’s best for the department ... Right now, I have enough things to keep me busy on a day-to-day basis.”

Conflicts with Smatresk might arise, Koloskie said, but that wouldn’t be unnatural in his position. He also said he will not compromise UNLV athletes or coaches – or his integrity – to get the permanent post.

“I’ll do what’s right for the department, first and foremost,” Koloskie said. “I can tell you right now, I’m pretty confident that if I’m given the opportunity to sit in this chair, I’ll represent UNLV athletics very well.”

He did bring a few items from his former office. On the wall to Koloskie’s left hang photographs and a poster, five framed images of the group that helps him maintain his balance and sense of humor.

The Three Stooges.

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  3. I am sorry but this Koloskie character has "loser" written all over him. If this guy gets the permanent position you might as well kiss UNLV Athletics goodbye because that will be the end of any chances the Rebels have at being successful.

    UNLV needs to hire a big time athletic director who is aggressive and has a plan to make UNLV Athletics the best in the land. Koloskie has no plan, he is just waiting for his retirement while doing the same lousy job that those in the Athetic Department at UNLV have always done.

    While Koloskie is busy unpacking his stuff, a real athletic director like Louisville's Tom Jurich is in the process of negotiating a buyout with their current Football coach while at the same time whooing new prospects such as Jon Gruden, Jeff Jagodzinski and Gus Malzahn! Koloskie can't find his belt or his three stooges DVD's while a competent Athletic Director would already be on the hunt for a new Football coach. While Louisville AD Tom Jurich is flying in private jets to meet the next Big Time coaching hire, Koloskie is busy trying to clean the coffee stain off his shirt.

    It makes me want to puke the way they run (ruin) things over at UNLV. No way should a school like Louisville be pushing so far ahead of UNLV Athletics. Just 10-15 years ago if you would have looked at UNLV Athletics and Louisville Athletics you would have seen that the two programs were both very similiar. Since that time Louisville has just steamrolled ahead being able to land a BIG TIME Basketball Coach, build a new Basketball Arena, build a new Football Stadium and join the BCS! All while UNLV leadership just continue to make excuses and tell us that they are trying hard on a day to day basis. WORTHLESS BUMS!

    UNLV must go out and hire a REAL ATHLETIC DIRECTOR. Someone who is aggressive, professional and has a can do attitude. UNLV needs someone to lead us in the 21st Century and set a path towards greatness.

    Koloskie is not the guy. Just look at him and you know he is not the guy. While a real Athletic Director would be wooing big time Football coaches, Koloskie still hasn't decided if Sanford is going to be fired or not? Excuse me while I go puke.

  4. So what do we judge them on, their choice of deoderant? No wonder UNLV football is in the shape it's in with people like this charge.

  5. Maybe he won't judge it on wins and losses, let's see how he judges it when the stands are empty. I am a RAF member and this is my last year. I will not support a loser and his loser football coach. He can kiss my rear if he thinks I'll pay to watch that idiot Sanford coach. Worst head coach and worst defensive coordinator in football.

    I am not a Koloskie fan after his loser mentality comment after the Reno game and now more loser comments. His attitude is exactly what is wrong with UNLV athletics. This is not acceptable in a town this size with a student body as large as UNLV's. I have been an Alumni longer than he has been at UNLV. The ones who support him really need to look at this guys comments.

    The guy from Hawaii Samtresk likes would be a total disastor for this program. He got along with noone at Hawaii.

  6. 13-39 what else evendence do you need? What college program other then norte dame gives a coach with that record another year to lose again.atleast charlie weis has big time recruits.But come on people let's be real unlv offence schem sucks and the defence oh please.I rather lose with a local high school coach for less money and with local talent on the team.Then with a over paid out of towner!!

  7. The Louisville comparison is a good one...a real life example of what a good AD (Tom Jurich) can do for an athletic dept. Since hiring Jurich, UL has made the jump from CUSA to a BCS conference, has Pitino as their coach and fields top-20 programs in both big sports. Imagine that!

    Koloskie perfect example of small time thinking and small minds at UNLV. Make excuses for mediocrity, be happy with what we have because hey, it's tough out there! Small time thinking gets small time results.

    Hey Koloskie, want to make a case for the permanent gig? Negotiate the buyout now, name Cink or Patterson interim HC and let the chips fall where they may. At least then there is a chance something good still might happen this season. And if it does, you look like a genius who saved UNLV football. The choice is his. Do something and go down fighting or do nothing and beg for mercy.

  8. I'm probably going to hell for saying this but.....I 100% agree with Sufferin.

    This article just highlights the problems with UNLV athletics.

  9. As a UNLV alum, it makes me absolutely sick to read these comments from our acting AD.

    Simply pathetic.

    Losses and excuses. That's all UNLV fans get.

    That's all we'll ever get as long as losers like this are in charge.

    We're doomed if he gets the job full time. We're probably doomed anyway.

    Too many small minded, small thinking apologists to have any hope of righting the ship.

    I'm glad it's Friday and I have the weekend to look forward to (minus the football game). If I had read this on a Monday, I might be too depressed to make it through the work week.

  10. Anyway you evaluate it the tax payers are going to get in the shorts real soon. First, the football coach will be fired and we will be paying the bill for his contract buy out and an extra 5 years of PERS retirement. Its just like the case with John 'loser' Robinson. They walk away richer for their time at UNLV and the taxpayers are poorer and big time loser.

    Secondly, it appears the AD is only temporary so here again is a contract buyout in the wings waiting to happen. More PERS retirement and a rich check at the end of a short, unmemorable AD career.

    Third, the cry will be for a big time winning coach and/or AD for UNLV...yeah, of course bring in another well known name jock and it will happen all over again... Even Mike Ditka would enjoy this ride and all the goodies possibly waiting for him a short 5 years down the road.... win or lose he could only win the big one in the line to the cashier's cage.

    For scribbling X's and O's a chalkboard or clipboard these clowns earn big bucks and fat retirement checks as they laugh all the way to the bank. If they can manage to hang on for a few years they get a contract renewal guaranting them a future buyout when they no longer produce the winning goods.

    John Robinson and all of the previous coaches made rich killings at UNLV for nothing more than producing losing seasons. Some even had the gall to call their recruits 'scholar athletes' when many could not manage to read a primary grade book like, "DICK AND JANE", and some had questionable backgrounds with activities terminating in jail sentences.

    Yeah, lets keep dreaming of UNLV being a 'big time athletic school' and maybe by some miracle it will eventually happen...NOT! The resort industry won't put money behind it because locals cannot bet against Nevada teams... They are in business to make money not lose it by putting it on a questionable progam at UNLV

  11. Hang on just a second, or two. First of all, Jerry didn't need to meet with me during this especially hot week. Many other ADs would not have, without even a thought. But Jerry has preached about a much-more open and accessible office, and he's lived up to those words.
    Plus, he confirmed that he wouldn't hesitate to make a mid-season move as he digests every aspect of the situation. That's not minor.
    He logically spelled out what he's going to consider, but he did not hesitate in saying he would make a move at the right time.
    A 69-6 loss to BYU? Yeah, maybe that would do it. Those are my words, but I got the feeling that something like that would be inexcusable.
    Hey, Jerry didn't hire Mike Sanford.
    This guy bleeds scarlet and gray, and for that people take personal shots at him? Jerry Koloskie is a stand-up guy who has poured his life -- more than half of it -- and soul into UNLV athletics. What a way to let him know he's appreciated.
    And anyone who thinks UNLV should get a top-filght name from wherever, do you not understand the financial plight at the school?

  12. If that's the case Rob then we should elimnate football and go to the WCC. At least then it would save us the embarrsment an dwe could play Saint mary's, Gonzaga, and probably get much better basketball exposure.

    I am tired "he's a nice guy" "he's a stand up guy". Is that what this is about. I can coach the football team for a lot less and lose like Sanford and be a nice guy. I am born and raised here, 52 years old, alum of UNLV, and I don't buy it.

    Watching Sanford coach and listening to weak pathetic excuses is all your going to write about. You want jerry to be an AD at UNLV. One of the first articles about him being AD was that everyone at UNLV wanted him. Why because they knew they would have job security. Back to the original statements. He is not the one for this program and his comments are weak.

    Now for your comment onb the financial plight. Yeah it's going to get worse. Why because the $3500 dollars a year I spend on athletics is gone until they fire Sanford, Therrell, etc. They won't get me back until they hire an AD with a pair, that not just wants to win, but will do what is necessary to win. And one other thing Rob, when noone shows up for the game is that going to help? The biggest joke is the attendance from our opponents exceeds are own attendance, there is your answer to the financial plight. Why don't you wake up and call for wht we really need. Just my opinion, but it is worth money to the school.

  13. @ Rob Miech,

    I know Jerry didn't have to give you this interview and I know all us as fans are on the outsdie looking in but how much more judging does Jerry need before he blows Sanford out of here? Jerry might be a standup guy but he is just like Sanford already making excuses why they cant be successful and that is why he isn't the right guy for the job. Nobody is saying it is going to be an easy process of hiring a new coach. So are we just supposed to keep taking it in the backside with this program and not say or do anything? I know I cannot speak for all Las Vegan's but I know I can speak for thousands of us who will no longer personally put one penny into UNLV athletics until they show they are serious. I cannot and will not support habitual losers. And that is the choice we have as fans.

  14. Rob, my little sister bleeds scarlet and grey but that doesn't make her a good AD. Jerry may not have hired Mike Sanford, but he hasn't shown him the door when everyone knows it is time.

    Everyone is upset with his comment "it can't just be predicated on wins and losses." Most fans see winning as priority number 1. You don't have to sacrifice grades and integrity to get there. The right coach can do all 3 and its obvious Sanford can't.

    I think I speak for most fans when I say I'm not going to keep putting my money into a program that doesn't have winning as its top priority. If winning isn't priority #1 for JK, then he go right along with Sanford.

  15. Rob-

    I wish your articles were as good as your last post! If they were I would read a lot more of them...

    Don't these people know that UNLV has NO money to pay some of these big named coaches...

  16. Rob-
    Mike Sanford is an extremely nice guy. Some would call him stand-up. Where has that gotten us?

  17. I knew I wasn't the only one that is serious enough to pull my money of this program. I will say it again - "I will never go to another football game at Sam Boyd and support the rebels until the right coach is hired". Notice I didn't say a "new coach" but the "right coach". If I never attend another UNLV game the rest of my life then so be it. The straw has broke the camels back!!

    @ Sufferin,
    That was the best post you have ever written, Good job with that one!!

  18. About time to put this "student-athlete" myth out of its misery. The biggest con in college sports.

  19. Your right to defend him Rob. This guy just got dropped into the hornets nest and is getting crucified. He is probably not the permanent guy, so I think he's wise to tread softly. Smatresk needs to pull the trigger on firing Sanford because he's the one with the permanent job and the one who will ultimately hire the next AD. Sanford should have been gone before his plane from Reno even landed in Vegas, but you can't tell me this situation is the "interim" guy's fault or that the interim guy is going to provide the permanent solution.

    Everyone clamoring for some big time, big money AD should remember the b-ball coaches we had after Tark. They were big time and they cashed a hefty pay check while running the b-ball program into the ground. UNLV needs someone young and hungry to put UNLV where it should be. I agree that Koloskie doesn't look like the guy and I agree there should be a national search, but I'd be cautious before you hire someone with a big name who cashes a paycheck here and does squat.

  20. rob i want to thank you for interviewing our AD and giving us his side of the story. sufferin' i wish you knew what you were talking about.. and bet on black... your turning into his little shadow. everyone has an opinion how to deal with our little mess we are in... but its an opinion.. dont state it as fact. its easy to be arm chair quarterbacks. lets try to be positve that unlv and the admin are going to do the right thing here.. both for the team and for the checkbook.

  21. The biggest obstacle to winning at UNLV is the lack of quality leadership in the athletic department, which can't be remedied by a hasty hire from a small pool of candidates. To find the best and most qualified candidates, UNLV has to conduct a full, fair and open search.

    That doesn't mean UNLV has to waste time or money on a search firm, but at a minimum it requires an open announcement, submission and screening of resumes, and interviews with the best candidates.

    In the past, the university chose AD's who were not qualified and lacked experience understanding and negotiating sophisticated business transactions.

    Too much emphasis was placed on past history as an athlete, coach or career academic administrator, and no consideration was given to the AD candidate's ability to make good business deals for UNLV athletics.

    A haphazard selection from a pool of three candidates chosen because they live in Las Vegas, have sports-related jobs and attended UNLV could lead to hiring another unqualified person.

    UNLV doesn't need a 'new' AD or a 'new' head football coach: UNLV needs the 'right' AD and the 'right' head football coach. A mid-season rush to hire a 'new' head coach led to hiring Mike Sanford. Let's not make the same mistake twice.

    Given the present condition of Nevada's economy and gaming industry, crafting an attractive compensation package for the 'right' head coach will be more complex and difficult than cold-calling Steve Wynn or Sheldon Adelson.

    Increased Legislative funding isn't an option, and the prospects for raising donations in this economy are limited. In order to succeed where past AD's have failed, the new AD needs more skills than being a nice, 'go along to get along' guy.

    Poor leadership inevitably brings economic and competitive failure, but the quality of leadership can't be improved until the process of selecting new leadership is improved.

    Open the position to all comers, evaluate their credentials, and hire the person who can best restructure the department's existing business relationships with corporate partners and individuals donors, and create a compensation package and working environment that will attract not just a 'new' head coach, but the 'right' head coach.

  22. UNLV needs to make a change...we've never had huge success in Football but 13-39...


  23. Here is a great list of coaching candidates for UNLV to look at:


  24. Wow. He's nice to the media. Imagine that. Let's give him a ten year contract.

    "coaches can't be judged solely by wins and losses"

    -Yeah. No kidding. Good thing for Sanford, huh? That's all we've been told for years and years now. W-L isn't the only aspect coaches should be judged on, BUT IT'S THE MOST IMPORTANT!

    You're kidding yourself if you think making that statement at this juncture isn't going to make people mad.

    If a 50 point blowout loss would be enough to can Sanford, than ANY score that results in a loss should have the same result. The time for moral vitories is OVER!

    I bleed Scarlet and Gray. My wife too. We give our money, time, and energy to the Athletic Department. But that DOES NOT mean we are qualified to get this football program where it needs to be.

    Someone needs to lift a finger to show fans that there is actually a living person on Maryland Pkwy. somewhere who cares about WINNING!

    Want my "appreciation?" FIRE SANFORD. Like yesterday. If there's no money, then hire someone who knows how to raise money. Why hasn't the search started? SOMEONE LIFT A FINGER!

    No more nice guys. No more excuses. No more losers taking UNLV to the cleaner with ZERO results.

  25. And speaking of the money excuse. (and I have to credit newyorkrebel for pointing this out).

    Didn't this newspaper report back in July that Hamprick left UNLV with a TWO MILLION DOLLAR surplus?

    Also, what happened to the $600,000+ we got for Utah's bc$ appearance?

    If anything, it sounds like maybe money is not being put to its best use by the people in charge.

    All the more reason to get the search started. . . yesterday.

  26. To all the people who say UNLV can't afford a big time coach.

    You have to spend money to make money!

  27. I'm going to play devil's advocate for a moment and say give Koloskie a little breathing room. The guy has been around Rebel athletics for a long time, and bleeds Scarlett and Gray like the rest of us. He's been here for the good times (Tark and Randall Cunningham) and the not so good times (Massimino and the revolving b-ball head coaches door). He may or may not be the best candidate for the job, but he's certainly in an unenviable position. His interim status doesn't allow for much flexibility. The trigger will ultimately need to be pulled on Sanford by the President. As far as the most viable choice for AD, it may come from the BCS ranks, or it may be one of the local names being floated around right now. I would personally hope the president doesn't show favoritism and hire his friend from Hawaii, as that has disaster written all over it. The key here is to find the "right" candidate, with all the passion and integrity needed for the position. He can start by finding someone whose enthusiasm for UNLV is equal to or greater than the bloggers on these forums. Sanford's day will come. Unfortunately for the seniors on the Rebel Football team, that day might be a year too late.

  28. If Koloskie is angling for the permanent job, he's not helping his cause by making excuses for the most reviled man in Las Vegas right now (Coach Sanford, who, as it turns out, is simultaneously being lauded as a hero in Reno.)

    Here a little advice on the job search, Mr. Koloskie: Lose Sanford now and you have a shot. Keep defending him and you might as well move back into the small office now.

  29. One of the key components of an AD is their ability to raise funds and develop boosters for the programs at UNLV. UNLV AD's have done nothing but alienate boosters and supporters for a long time with the exception of Dr Brad we haven't had a decent AD in a long time.

    Jerry has been associated with this program a long time and that's why I don't want him to be our AD given the state of our program he is not strong enough. We need someone who can pound the doors and get the community behind the program. It starts with tradition and developing and recruiting kids in our backyard. As far as needing a reason to fire Sanford, get a grip. If Jerry wanted to salvage this season he would have stepped in fired Sanford immediately after losing to our rival for the 5th straight time and to one of the worst teams in our conference in Wyoming. The fans would have gone gaga over Jerry and showed up to support this team. But instead same doo another day. There is far too much sympathy, poor Jerry, poor Mike. You want my money get someone who knows what the hell they are doing. The only person they need to be friends with right now is Lon Kruger and the football coach they bring in.

  30. I don't think Koloskie is defending Sanford as much is he is defending himself for not having fired him already. Be that as it may, he is in the unenviable position of being placed in the interim AD roll just to see the football team implode just 4 games into the season. Tough situation to deal with as an interim AD. However, if the Rebels get rolled by BYU in a typical performance - uninspired, unprepared, unintelligent, etc. - Sanford has to be fired on the spot. Smatresk, you need to lead the firing.

  31. Why beat a dead horse to death? I'm sure DUKE fans are asking for the head of their football coach... but can you really see DUKE ever having a good football team? EVER?! Lets be realistic, here. It should be no surprise that UNLV has a poor football program... Besides, I'd rather read more articles about the UNLV Basketball Team. This school is a basketball school. Heck, our football coach even knows that.

  32. gorebs, betonblack, et al ... valid points, and everyone hears your anger. Dropping pigskin and, say, playing hoops in the WCC is an option, and not a bad one at all.
    But what is Koloskie going to do, sit down and tell me, before he does it, how and when he's going to fire a football coach during his season? No.
    For him to simply confirm that he has that power, if he sees fit, to do that ... c'mon. That's more than most in his position would say.
    Again, I understand your anger, but this started long ago, when somehow Carol Harter felt the urge to extend Mike Hamrick's contract (against many of your wishes), and then he went ahead and extended Sanford's ... etc
    Tangled webs, eh?
    The surplus, by the way, is there ... for emergencies.

  33. BetonBlack says he won't go to another Rebel football game till we hire the "right" coach. How are you going to determine that? After we make it to a bowl game? It's easy to look back and say you're a smart person, a lil bit harder to predict who will be successful. Climb down off your soapbox, there's only room for Suff Succ

  34. Jerry belongs at the library. It's clear he knows nothing about coaches or fans.

    Sanford should be canned. At the same time Jerry should get a job at the local library.

  35. On the one hand... it is indeed admirable to talk to the press at all in this situation. But on the other hand, I'd much rather hear nothing than hear "there's more to coaching than W's" - absolutely the worst possible thing to say to a fanbase that gave up on Sanford a loooooooooong time ago. We simply don't care about Sanford's "good qualities" if they don't translate to wins. Harsh? Maybe, but true. And Koloskie had to know that before making such an ill-advised comment.

  36. Maybe they ought to move the stadium down to Searchlight. That's makes about as much sense as where they built it.

  37. Rob, Hamrick's contract was extended by the Regents after Rogers forced Harter into resigning (but before her resignation from office took effect), and although Rogers was critical of Hamrick, Rogers supported the extension.

    Likewise, with Sanford, the extension was supported not just by Hamrick, but also by fans and media at the end of last season when the team finished 5-7, one game short of bowl eligibility.

    The only thing the University got right (after myself and some of the writers at the RJ and Sun weighed in) was that Sanford's extension should not be 'guaranteed'.

    At the end of 2008, Sanford had one 'guaranteed' season (2009-10) left on his original five year agreement.

    The university agreed to extend that contract for an additional 3 years, giving him a 4 year contract overall, but only one year (this year) was guaranteed, which is why his buyout is $225,000 instead of $900,000.

    And as for that 'surplus', if you ever get the budget numbers from UNLV please publish them!

    If that money is actually in a bank account somewhere, I will wear a Reno jersey and Duke hat for the rest of the year!

  38. Three Stooges. This guy is a stooge. I sincerely pray that UNLV wins on Saturday, however, everything is stacked against them and a loss is inevitable.

    We will see how far UNLV will go to keep Sanford as coach if the Rebels loose.

  39. this is the first time i have ever disagreed with the majority of you guys.

    you judge jerry on one article that he gave. you know nothing about him. you know nothing about his philosophies or his impact that he can make on our athletic dept and you freakin ride his *ss.

    let me tell you what i KNOW... not what i think or have heard.... WHAT I KNOW. jerry would be a good AD for UNLV. like rob said he cant come out and say he is going to fire someone or anything like that.... that is unprofessional. and remember there is a right way and a wrong way to do things. even if the subject is fire sanford (Which i agree should be done). and Jerry will do this the right way. because thats the kind of guy he is. he is a stand up guy, very professional.

    i dont know about you but i want an AD that first and foremost can get the job done. second, is passionate about UNLV.... not his job, but UNLV. Stand up guy. professional. among other things but those are important factors.

    none of you know anything about him and you roast him.... take your anger for sanford out on sanford.... dont blame jerry for sanfords horrible coaching ability.

    you have to remember he has nothing to do with sanfords hiring. wait until the end of this year before you talk Sh*t

  40. When I attended UNLV I took a class from Jerry. I liked him as a teacher and I like him now.

    I want somebody who is loyal to UNLV.

    This is a transient city and we have had our share of transient coaches and carpetbaggers (Robinson and Massimino, come to mind). We need UNLV stabilized. While everybody is yelling "fire", very few people have to fight the fire.

    As fans and supporters we need to still go to the games and root for the players. To do otherwise is short sighted and demeans the efforts and sacrifices the players make.

    I think Sanford should go. It's not up to me when he goes.

  41. UNLV is broke, in more ways than one.

    Take a time out, LOL, end the sports programs one and all!!!! Too much spent and for what? A return to the Tark era, a legacy of cheating and corruption???? But that's ok, in Vegas corruption gets you a seat on the County Commission or a run for some elected office....

  42. I thought this guy might be a candidate for a permanent spot but THIS IDIOT NEEDS TO GO too. Succotash is right, Koloskie has loser written all over him. Get the _ outta my school I've had enough

  43. "Most importantly, making people in the community understand that this is their athletic department. It's not mine."

    Exactly, Jerry. Then you need to listen to the people. In fact, Rob; why doesn't the Sun run a poll on whether the UNLV faithful want Sanford fired. I'd be shellshocked if the percentage that want him gone is below 85%.

    No-one is saying Jerry Koloskie is a bad guy but he's obviously not the guy for the AD job going forward if he's not smart enough or brave enough to pull the trigger on Sanford. With his comments to you he aligned himself with Sanford. Now, THEY BOTH HAVE TO GO.

    And I agree with above, Succotash's comments although harsh, were right on the money.

  44. In all honesty it doesn't matter to me if I ever go to Sam Boyd again, I already have a favorite college football team. Besides if I want to see high school level ball it is all over the valley on Friday nights and I don't have to pay as much.

    I agree with you Rob nobody was expecting Jerry to tell you he is tossing Mike out & I know you didn't go there for that. Sanford is like the Vegas roach problem you can't seem to get rid of them.
    Jerry wont have to toss Sanford because Neal Smatresk will blow him out by Monday. This will be even better, after UNLV gets dusted by the 26 year old freshmen. Wouldn't it be great if Sanford just jumped the grenade for the program and ices himself and resigns in the postgame discussion?

  45. A little history, I played for then Coach Tony Knapp from '79 to '81. Our record my first year was 9-1-2. 2nd year was 7-4. This program was 2 years after being at DivII. We played the same schedule they do now. We were very succesful against these teams including beating BYU on their home field during their homecoming and they were ranked 8th in the nation! So don't try to tell me this can't be done. Back then we had what was called the "REBEL HEART". We just simply refused to quit and always expected to win. We had laid a foundation for the football program. The one thing I could never understand was the fan base in Las Vegas. Simply put, they are the worst, spoiled rotten cry babies I have ever seen! Even with our record, we never could fill up the stadium, so any talk of the fans coming out to support a winner is hogwash in Vegas. The fans SUCK!!! They cry about having to drive out too far to go to a game, get their car dirty, or simply have too many other options. How do you expect the University and the program to survive? I grew up in the midwest in a small farm town with just a few thousand people. Every Friday night we would have 5 times that many in the stands. It was a tradition that we waited for year round. You go to the game as part of the community. Folks, this is the only game in town!! Las Vegas had maybe a quarter of the people they have now and we drew more to the stadium back then. It simply blows my mind that a town this big cannot come out and support the teams, hell you don't even go to the T & M anymore. When is the last time they had a sell out since Tarkanian left? A football field on campus in my opinion would make no difference as the sh*tty fans would just make another lame excuse not to go. I know there are a lot of non-natives in Vegas but you should adopt this program and support it for the good of the community. I was part of something that was very exciting back then and I saw the football team being one of the potential programs like Boise State or Fresno State is today, with crazy fans having a great time at the stadium! Being the only game in town the people of Vegas should be rabid about the program-regardless of the result. Then and only then will you attract top flight coaches, AD's, etc. I too share the heartache of the season. I see a lot of foolish plays made by the players and I see no "REBEL HEART" out there. Silly penalties and serious lack of tackling skills. To me that has a lot to do with coaching. I think 5 years is enough for this coach. But you also will not get the right coach to come here or get the good recruits to come if they do not feel the support of the community. To say we never had great football here is false! I am so glad to see the passion of the messages on this board. That tells me that a very small percentage of people actually care. Keep it growing!!

  46. rebelrowser, excellent post. Thanks for the history lesson.

  47. Thanks. I'm blind now.

    One word: Paragraphs

    The T&M sold out last year.

  48. we will beat BYU.
    It is too bad that we will beat BYU when we do not deserve to. They seem to be good hearted men with strong spirituality.

    UNLV coaches may be good hearted but maybe the staff is under so much stress they have not thought to do something like visit sick youth in a local hospital.

    The team has known it will be beat BYU since last years loss.

    The team meet amoungst themselves with no coaches and had strong practices.

    As for recruiting, this win will help.
    Thank goodness for UNLV most recruits from outside of Nevada are unaware that there has been little fan support and a lack of tradition.
    Students are most concerned with being a star right away and going to the NFL. That is closer to the thought process as a high school student unless you have a parent or sibling that has been through the process of D1 sports before.

    Marketing is key.
    If a big coach comes in, athletes and fans will get excited about the coach. I hope UNLV does fluke up and get a big name coach.
    If the players were more marketable you would have more fans coming to see UNLV games. Its that simple.
    Knowshawn Moreno is the best example i can think of as marketable player. We do not have that type of character that sticks out like that.
    That is why i am big on Bradley Randle and Briget.
    Randle is exciting and can get fans to come to see some exciting running all across the feild.
    I don't see players beating on there chest like a Ray Lewis. One player can change the whole atmosphere.
    When i watch practice and hear Bradley Randle pumping up the O line to beat the D line on a given play and talking trash while running past starting linebackers it gets infectious and the whole team begans to talk it up.
    I really think UNLV does not have an eye for players that have a killer passion for football.
    My dream was to hit someone so hard i died on the feild.
    I was given the number 42 which at my school in Compton was the number that the hardest hitters wore. I still have the record for most tkls in a single game. Plus i started at running back. When i blocked my chin strap would come off and my face mask was bent ever year from hitting people in the mouth. People in the stands would ask "how come #42 is tackling people who do not have the ball.
    I give you my glory story to say when it is time for smash mouth football I can see a killer on the field right away.
    UNLV is so lacking killers. This equals bad marketing. UNLV has great atheletes but no killers.

    Mafi #42 for UNLV is starting at D End this game. Now he is a Killer on defense.
    Let's see how much of a difference he make in the game.
    He is a killer on D and has never started and played very little.
    Someone has a bad eye for recruiting.

  49. "Koloskie says coaches can't be judged solely by wins and losses"

    Throughout America college coaches are judged upon their ability/inability to cover the number.

    : )

  50. @ UNLVbcs,
    You know I love your optimism and am right with ya on most posts but the rebels have no chance at all to win this game. The reason why UNLV will lose this game is the same reason why they have been losing for the past 5 years. Once UNLV is behind in this game the players will give up again and lose big, it has become mental now.

    (Regime change is needed like yesterday, you know it & I know it). Sanford has lost this team, why do you think the players held meetings and practices by themselves? We all know the right players aren't out there running up the hash marks so what does that say about the coaching and their inability to put the right players on the field. We all agree that you start your best players whether they are freshmen or not!!!
    We all know Randle would blow up right away and become the most popular rebel in Vegas & Bridget would be our best cover corner, that is why the coaches have gotta go.

    I just read in the RJ that BJ Bell & Kenny Brown are going to redshirt, are you kidding me? Here is Therrell saying that our defensive schemes are so complex that it takes a long time to learn them. Don't even get me started on that, I will go off all day on that one!! You mean it's complex missing tackles all game, being out of position, getting blocked 20 yards downfield, stupid PI calls, being 10 steps behind every play, & looking like you've put on pads for the 1st time, thats complex? This article was printed yesterday and here is Therrell & Sanford both still making excuses why they suck so bad on defense. I could take over this defense tomorrow and have them playing like killers in one week.

  51. I would love to have Brian Kelley here as coach. I was listening to an interview he was doing on a national radio show, man this guy is a winner. Look what he has done with "Cincy". The host asked him what was his biggest challenge he faced when he took over that program - he said he had to change the culture of losing mentally. He said they were averaging between 2-4 wins a season (sound familiar)and losing had become a culture at the entire university and that was this 1st thing that had to be changed. You have to recruit players that believe like they belong and the coaches have to be able to channel a winning culture into the recruits, that is what UNLV is lacking the most.

  52. UNLV should send a notice out to the alumni and rabid fans to come up w/ the buyout money for sanford. that'll shut them up.

  53. UNLV will beat BYU tonight.

    I'm so down to coach from the sidelines with you fam. That may work better than the personalities we have as coaches now.

    I do like the O Line coach however.

    The Underdog victory is in the air. UNLV is the biggest underdog around tonight after the loss to Wyoming.

    BJ Bell is a injury red shirt i believe.

    I feel like i'm playing today. Can't sleep because i believe in a win for UNLV.
    I just hope the guys keep their MOJO.
    Let's go Mafi.

  54. Hmmm...don't know bout that UNLVbcs,


    Daily Herald: BYU needs to watch out while Rebels fight themselves. Written by Jason Franchuk.

    This guy is a freaking jerk! I don't know that I've heard worse from a reno fan about UNLV. Absolute MORON!

  55. As fans I feel we should take some responsibility for the situation and provide support for change as opposed to only bickering vocally.

    Therefore I propose the following:

    Should BYU win tonights game vs UNLV and J Koloskie fires Sanford on the spot or shortly thereafter THEN I will personally purchase two tickets for each of the three remaining UNLV home games.

    Individually this doesn't sound like much but collectively as fans this could provide some incentive for the change we need.

    If Koloskie takes the jump and fires Sanford mid season then he needs to know that we have got his back.

  56. Coach Tony Knapp was pure class and we lured him away from Boise State.

    Surely there must be another Tony Knapp out there to replace Sanford

    When Coach Coach Tony Knapp was here The Silver Bowl only held 18000 but was full always

  57. Good idea, Traval. I'm with you. I haven't gone to any games this year nor will I till Sanford is gone. Last year's pathetic capitualation vs Reno was enough for me. I knew then for sure that this coach was a loser and the only way to stop the bleeding was to cut him loose. The San Diego humiliation should have been the last nail in his coffin.

  58. Here are the facts: UNLV is 2-3 and in order for them to finish at .500 they have to win 4 out of the next 7 still playing BYU, Utah, TCU, CSU, AF, & SDSU. Who are those 4 wins going to come against just to finish 6-6? The only other win I see on their schedule is perhaps the Lobo's, and even that isn't automatic with this group after the Wyoming meltdown.

    Before the season began I picked UNLV to go 8-4 or maybe even 9-3 but it looks like they are going to end up 3-9 or 2-10 again and spin out in an epic tailspin right into the dirt. War Sam Boyd being filled tonight with BYU fans and the rebel fans staying home in boycot mode.

  59. Those were the good old days playing for Knapp. He was indeed first class. When I came they had just finished expanding the Silver Bowl to 32,000. They did it in a way that would allow them to further expand it to over 60,000, if needed. That was the vision that they had in mind by going to D-I!

    It seems just like yesterday when we beat BYU in front of their 60,000 fans. What a triumph that was! We even had a great crowd welcoming us at the airport when we got back. We truly were on track back then. I moved away after graduating but still try to watch them on TV when I can and am just sick at what I see now with visitors outnumbering the locals. How many alumni have graduated since 30 years ago that still live in town now? Get out and support the school! The problems with the coaches will take care of itself. Vegas has got the worst band wagon fans around!

  60. I wonder what kind of (A) comment KolSTOOGEoskie is going to make now. That is all we need, a lousy coach and a lousy AD.

  61. Well it wasn't 69-6. But it was sure an embarrassing beat down......again.

    Let's see if anyone in our big talking athletic department cares to lift a finger this week.

    Neal......Jerry......is anyone listening?

    Does anyone care?

  62. I think Jerry is starting to "stick out like a sore thumb" if he and Smatresk didn't put a plan in place last week to be executed Monday morning should the team look lifeless against BYU! Smatresk said this would be evaluated on a week-to-week basis. This game couldn't have gone any worse. Well, the expected happened. The coaching staff didn't find a way to "get better". The defense didn't even phase BYU despite the "assignment adjustments". If they (Jerry and Smatresk) don't do something soon, they have some serious explainin' to do.

  63. The common complaint over the years has been UNLV's failure to connect with the community. The Hamrick complaint was that he was a stand off guy and he could not raise $. Same issue before with the previous AD. Looking at the UNLV guide tonite, same faces appear that were there before. Lon Kruger went out and got his own Public Relations help. It is a slap that a Coach would need to go mainstream to get the Vegas crowd to understand what he and his program is about.

    Jerry has been a part of these administrations nice guy and all. Still the same attitude persists among locals and especially those with money to make UNLV a better Athletic Department. Is he the guy to walk in and make a Hotel Owner want to be a part of fixing the situation? Reading the article, I am not sure that he is that guy. UNLV was the only program who took a Hawaii road game and did not add an additional home game to help offset costs. He was there when this happened. Schedule Southern Utah and make some money with an extra game! They gave ESPN all of their marketing with Jerry on board - no revenues came. There has been no answer about how to televise games that are not involved with the MTN or other network deals. He was there. UNLV Baseball dropped with they lost their Coach to TCU. The replacement loses games and gets outshined in exposure, talent and funds by the local JC program. He was there when that happened. Would Alabama have an Auburn grad as their "voice" of their football program? This is the case at UNLV with McCann being a BYU Alumni President. He was there when this was decided as well.

    The other local candidates also have been a part of this attitude during their various roles while a part of the Athletic Department. Give us an Associate AD from LSU, Florida, Oregon, North Carolina, Kansas - anywhere who understands how having both big time hoops and football can change the outlook of their finances. Colorado State made a change, same with Air Force - both went to bowl games and their programs are on the uptick. They had popular long standing Coaches in place and made a bold move still with facilities not equal to UNLV.

    A new AD would clean house and get their own Coach. John Bunning was let go just after the mid way mark in North Carolina a couple years ago. This gave UNC the chance to be the first one with an opening - which got them Butch Davis.

  64. "Sanford's job security is the hot-button issue of the week. He is making $425,000 a year through 2012. He would be paid $287,500 if he gets sacked before Dec. 4. After that, the buyout clause drops to $225,000" ---- could be why Sanford hasn't been dismissed considering the financial issues of the Athletic Dept @ UNLV??? Just a thought.....