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#pounditTuesday, January 31, 2023

UNLV to hire high school coach Tony Sanchez

Tony Sanchez Bishop Gorman

UNLV is turning to the high school ranks to try fixing their football program.

Both Sports Illustrated and the Las Vegas Review Journal report that the Rebels will hire Tony Sanchez as their next head football coach.

Sanchez has coached at local powerhouse Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas for the past six seasons, winning six consecutive state championships. Sanchez went 15-0 this season and helped the Gaels capture the No. 1 spots from MaxPreps and USA Today’s high school polls. He has led Bishop Gorman to an 85-5 record since taking over the program in 2009 (you can read his full resume here).

Sanchez’s hiring appears to have political ties. Sanchez has the support of many wealthy Las Vegas businessmen, including most notably the Fertitta family. Lorenzo Fertitta, who is the CEO of the UFC and runs the Stations Casinos, attended Bishop Gorman. His son, Nicco, played football at Gorman and will be attending Notre Dame.

Sanchez’s political ties are expected to help him raise money towards building the program new facilities, which are desperately needed. UNLV began playing in 1978 and has only had two winning seasons since 1995. Bobby Hauck, who was fired after five seasons on the job, won just two games in four of his five seasons.

Some may believe that hiring a high school coach is a joke, but can things really get worse for the Rebels? Also, Hugh Freeze and Gus Malzahn have shown us that former high school coaches can succeed as head coaches of major college football programs.

Sanchez has a lot going for him: he’s young (40), hungry, should be able to recruit players from his former school, and he has plenty of support from the school. He’ll have every opportunity to succeed.

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