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  1. Bobby Haucks new three-year contract will pay him an annual salary of $850,000, an increase of $350,000 per year over his old deal. The annual salary increases are as follows: base salary from $150,000 to $250,000, media appearance fee from $150,000 to $225,000 and public appearance fee from $50,000 to $225,000. Read more: http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2014/jan/16/new-contract-pay-bobby-hauck-850000-year/
  2. Kudos to Greenminer for posting this. http://grfx.cstv.com/photos/schools/unlv/sports/m-footbl/auto_pdf/2013-14/postgame_notes/postgame_notes_20140102aaa.pdf
  3. What happened in Vegas this year didn’t stay in Vegas. And that’s a good thing for head coach Bobby Hauck and his 2013 UNLV football team. When Hauck took over the UNLV football program four years ago, he knew the challenges facing him. “We knew it was going to be a big job to turn it around,” Hauck said. “There have been a lot of really, really fine coaches go through here and no one’s had much success.” The program had been to just three bowl games in school history, and hadn’t played one outside of Las Vegas since 1984. Furthermore, UNLV managed just three winning seasons in a quarter century, from 1987 to 2012, with the most recent coming in 2000. And despite having players such as Randall Cunningham, Ickey Woods and Keenan McCardell go on to successful NFL careers, UNLV was unable to turn Sin City into Win City on the gridiron. Instead, the university has been much more readily identified with its basketball program. The Runnin’ Rebels gained national fame under Jerry Tarkanian, winning the NCAA title in 1990 in the first of two straight Final Four appearances. That program continues to rank as one of the nation’s most storied in college hoops. “The four letters are recognizable, but not for the football program,” Hauck said. “We want to build it into a football school as well.” This year, Hauck and his crew have started to get noticed thanks to a 7-5 record that included two consecutive impressive wins to end the season. ESPN Events, which operates the Heart of Dallas Bowl presented by PlainsCapital Bank, was among those who saw the growth, and extended an invitation for the Rebels, over several other bowl eligible teams, to face another program on the rise: North Texas. “We’re excited. It’s a big deal for us,” Hauck said. “Our guys have had to overcome some things at UNLV in order to get to where they are. As you build a program, one of the major milestones is getting to a bowl game, and that’s what we’ve done. It’s been a fun season.” Hauck knows how to win. To take the UNLV job, he left a juggernaut Football Championship Subdivision program in Montana, where he had fashioned a Big Sky Conference all-time best 80-17 (.825) record from 2003-09. The Grizzlies also reached three FCS championship games (2004, 2008 and 2009) during his tenure. Now he is changing the culture at UNLV. This year, the Rebels won three road games, which was as many as the squad had won over the previous eight years combined. “He came in a tackled a tough task,” quarterback Caleb Herring said. “He took some lumps early, but he stuck to his plan. How we are turning it around is just a reflection of his leadership.” “We’re moving forward,” Hauck said. “We’re evolving as a program. We started from below ground, basically, and built a foundation. And now we are seeing the rewards for that.” And the first of what UNLV faithful hope will be many rewards to come will be this national television appearance on New Year’s Day 2014 in the historic Cotton Bowl. Drew Harris (drew@firstpitchpr.com) is the founder of First Pitch Public Relations, a sports-focused media relations company in Fort Worth. He has 15 years of experience in the sports communications industry with UW-Green Bay, TCU, the Kansas City Chiefs and the Kansas City Royals. His current clients include: ESPN Events, UT Arlington Athletics, The Ben Hogan Award and the Fort Worth Stock Show Syndicate. UNLV's INTERACTIVE ONLINE GUIDE - IMG College and UNLV Athletics launched the first-ever interactive, online bowl guide for Rebel fans as the team prepares for its New Year's Day appearance in the Heart of Dallas Bowl presented by PlainsCapital Bank. With head coach Bobby Hauck holding his final 2013 practice in the city of Las Vegas, the team has was released Monday for a holiday break before reconvening in Texas on Saturday. The 24-page guide, which includes click-on videos and game reviews, is available online at UNLV's Gameday Central or at following link: http://www.unlvdallasbowlguide.com/.
  4. Tim Hauck didn’t need to be informed about UNLV’s defensive woes. Ever since his older brother, Bobby, took over the program, Hauck had been following along closely. He even dug through the history book. “Defense here has not been good ever since the program started,” Hauck said. A couple of days after the Cleveland Browns cut Hauck, along with the entire coaching staff, Hauck accepted his brother’s offer to come to Las Vegas and try to change that. There are a lot of reasons UNLV was able to break through for a 7-5 season and only the fourth bowl game in history. It’s possible none are more important than Hauck and Timm Rosenbach joining the staff as coordinators. Both guys have NFL experience — Hauck played defensive back for six teams and Rosenbach led two organizations at quarterback — and Hauck was also on two NFL staffs. In their first year, the improvements on both side of the ball were drastic, and though it’s debatable how much credit to give each guy, it’s clear they made an impact. “It’s crazy how a bunch of little things can actually make a big difference,” senior defensive tackle Tyler Gaston said. On the practice field, in the film room and on game days, the defensive players seemed to enjoy being around Hauck. He can yell just as good as the next guy, but Hauck was also “relentlessly positive,” according to Gaston. Read more: http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2013/dec/18/1st-year-coordinators-may-be-key-unlvs-breakthroug/
  5. Rest assured, there isnt an ounce of dismay around UNLV today. Four years after he arrived from one of those deep fishing holes in Montana, the ones were he might stand in the middle of a blizzard to cast his line for a trout he most always would release, Bobby Hauck has led UNLV into somewhat uncharted waters. This is just the fourth time in program history the Rebels will go bowling and the first in nearly three decades they will do so in another state, thanks to a 7-5 record in which Haucks team won more games than the previous three years combined. The opponent is also one of college footballs feel-good stories of 2013, a program much like UNLV that has rebuilt itself from the ashes of obscurity. North Texas finished third in the West Division of Conference USA and won six of its last seven games. It seems like a good time, then, to learn a little about the Mean Green: ▶ The University of North Texas is located in Denton, near the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex between Oklahoma and Texas on Interstate 35. It lies on the southern end of what is commonly referred to as Tornado Alley, meaning Smatresk could move into his new house one day and be a modern-day Dorothy flying his way to Oz the next. Which I suppose would make Gerry Bomotti the Wicked Financial Witch of the East. ▶ You can drive from the middle of campus to Cotton Bowl Stadium in 50 minutes on a clear day, meaning the Mean Green should have a decided advantage in seats filled. Hauck on a conference call Sunday evening said he hopes North Texas brings all of Denton and any neighboring counties, because if one thing looks better on television than a New Years Day bowl, its one with actual people cheering it. Read more: http://www.reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/ed-graney/believe-it-or-not-unlv-jan-1-bowl
  6. The Heart of Dallas Bowl had its media call tonight. Here are a few highlights: – The real zinger was that Rick Villarreal and Dan McCarney talked a whole lot about how important it is for UNT fans to show up on New Year’s Day. “The fan base challenged us,” Rick Villarreal said. “Now we are challenging them.” Villarreal believes UNT has put the product the fans asked for on the field. Now he is expecting UNT’s fans to show up and support the team. Read more: http://meangreenblog.dentonrc.com/2013/12/hod-press-call-notes.html/
  7. One area where UNLV really jumps out in terms of its performance this season is in pass defense. The Rebels lead the Mountain West in passing defense with an average of 214.5 yards allowed a game, more than 10 yards less allowed a game than any other team in the league. The Rebels opponents are completing just 51.7 percent of their passes. UNLV is also plus-6 in turnover margin and also ranks second in the Mountain West in penalty yards at 386 on the season. Kenneth Penny, a junior from Lancaster, ranks second in the Mountain West in passes defended with an average of 1.33 per game. In a lot of ways, UNLV sounds a lot like UNT. And the Rebels are loaded with Texas players. Read more: http://meangreenblog.dentonrc.com/2013/12/a-look-at-unlv.html/
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