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It’s that time of the year again: the ‘Fire Pat Hill’ carousel


When we think of Fresno’s favorite annual fall events, most people probably think of The Big Fresno Fair. But that’s No. 2 on my list.

What I look forward to most each year is when Fresnans take a dizzying ride on the “Fire Pat Hill” carousel.

I’ll be honest: I had planned to post a poll this week asking at what point in the season the Fresno State football fans would turn their pre-season excitement into mid-season Pat Hill ire. It happens at some point every year. It’s fun to try to predict when. Angry Red Wavers beat me to it, though, after what many are deeming an embarrassing loss last weekend against Cal.

The game wasn’t even over by the time the “Fire Pat Hill” tweets starting flying. The consequent debate on 1430 ESPN was about who should and shouldn’t be allowed to criticize the football program. It’s like our own little local version of the Brett Favre will-he-play, won’t-he-play saga. Just wait. It’s coming. Every year.

I’m not a Fresno State football fan, just an observer of all things Fresno. So I don’t care if Hill keeps the job. I just like to watch the skirmish. The annual Pat Hill witch hunt is incredible fodder — like a reality TV train wreck you can’t flip away from.

I marvel at how it goes down each year. Everybody starts out excited about the new season, then there’s one disappointing loss (it’s usually not Week 1) and the anti-Pat Hill side starts calling for a coup while the other sticks up for Coach Fu Manchu. If the Bulldogs can pull of a big upset, the fuming fans die down a bit, but once the ‘Dogs don’t win the conference, the whole ordeal starts again in the off-season. It sorta reminds me of a movie.

Right now though, it doesn’t looks like the “Fire Pat Hill” carousel is stopping anytime soon. It’s a long season with a tough schedule ahead, so hold on tight, guys and gals. I look forward to seeing how dizzying it gets after Fresno State gets thumped in Nebraska this weekend.

Responses to "It’s that time of the year again: the ‘Fire Pat Hill’ carousel"

Michael says:

Just win the WAC (which Hill hasn’t done since he arrived, just a tie), that’s all I ask. Any other coach who hadn’t won their conference in the time Hill has been here would have been fired. But Hill has used smoke and mirrors with his “Anytime. Anyplace” mantra to stay.

Don’t get me wrong, I respect what he’s done for the program and has elevated it to another level. Problem is he keeps saying he wants to play for a BCS game each year, but can’t win his own conference. Imagine when Fresno enters the Mountain West and has to play teams with much better talent? Yeah good luck with that.

He should take a page from Boise State’s playbook and see what they did. They are where he wanted Fresno State to be.

I wish Fresno would hire on Trent Dilfer as an offensive coordinator for a year and then let him replace Hill. He may have not been the best NFL player, but the guy knows his football.

fresnobites says:

I think everyone is sick of riding the carousel, sick of the same offensive scheme, sick of the same catch phrase excuses (“we need to get back to playing bulldog football”, “we ran into a buzzsaw”, etc), and sick of playing second fiddle to Boise.

There is a reason people call for Hill’s job year end and year out. He has yet to produce a title and doesn’t have the imagination or staff to change the offense. The fans recongnize this, the opposing players recongnize this and certainly the opposing coaches recognize this.

I’m officially depressed now.

Matt says:

Watching the game last Saturday was frustrating because you just kept waiting for him to let Derek Carr throw the ball down the field. There were a couple of instances where the ‘Dogs were “thisclose” to connecting on some fairly deep passes (the effort in the end zone by Jalen Saunders comes to mind), but it’s like the playcalling got conservative after a couple of misses.

In the end, we’ll probably beat the teams we’re supposed to beat, lose to the teams we’re supposed to lose and finish with another 8-5 season. It could be worse, we could be San Jose State.

Derek says:

Agreed on the previous comments.

For as long as he’s been at Fresno, for as much as he’s getting paid, for as little as he has to show for it, how can fans not want more?

With this being the last year we’ll be in the WAC, at the end of it I’m anxious to see if Hill will step down gracefully (long past his due) or if the school will drop him and clear the boards for someone new when we enter the Mountain West. Either way, it really is time for a fresh start.

Jeff says:

When I first saw the title I thought that this was a story on a Facebook group called “Fire Pat Hill!!!”

Maybe next time you can include the page in future stories.

Mike Oz says:

I linked a Facebook page I found, but didn’t find that group.
Thanks for the link.

Mike Oz says:

That page is linked in my post. Up near the top

tom says:

The reason why the fire pat hill crowd is heard every season is because the morons over at fresno state refuse to get rid of him. how many years of not winning conference titles, getting destroyed by boise state every year, and having yearly meltdowns does it take before the bozos at fresno state like tommy boeh do something about it?

if u can name me one other coach in the history of college football who has never won an outright conference title in 15 years and still has his job let me know. for that matter, what coach in all of division one athletics would be allowed to keep their job after 15 seasons of never winning a conference title? just pathetic.

d says:

maybe he can morally win the wac.