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Coach Whittingham Tops List of Non-BCS Coaches

PASADENA, CA - SEPTEMBER 02:  Quarterback Brett Ratliff #15 of the Utah Utes drops back to pass against the UCLA Bruins during the college football game held on Septemeber 2, 2006 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California.  The Bruins defeated the Utes 31-10. The Bruins defeated the Utes 31-10.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
JeremySenior Writer IApril 20, 2009

SI.com went out and ranked the non-BCS coaches. Here, we list the Mountain West coach rankings. This list is odd because in my opinion Bronco Mendenhall should be higher, because he has two conference titles, three straight 10 win seasons, and four straight bowl appearances while winning two of those.

Bronco should be third on the MWC at least. Yes, Troy Calhoun has been dong great things in his two years, but he has not had the success Bronco had. Also, Brady Hoke is eighth and also ahead of Bronco, which is a close race with his previous success at Ball State, but he should be behind Bronco.

In this overall list, Colorado coach Steve Fairchild was in the bottom half at 34th, but he took a very bad team to a bowl win over Fresno State. A top 25 ranking at least should be deserved. The rest seem about right, but the biggest eye raiser was SMU coach June Jones was fourth!

Seems high for a coach who won only one game which was against FCS team Texas State. Yes, his Hawai’i days were great, but his ranking is a bit high.

1. Kyle Whittingham, Utah. A brilliant defensive mind who has helped build the Utes into the nation’s premier non-”Big Six” program.

2. Gary Patterson, TCU. The only thing missing from his résumé is a BCS bowl. And it’ll come if he stays with the Horned Frogs long enough.

4. Troy Calhoun, Air Force. The next stop for this wunderkind could be a trip back to the NFL.

8. Brady Hoke, San Diego State. A tough guy with a relentless work ethic, Hoke will wake this slumbering program that teems with potential.

9. Bronco Mendenhall, BYU. He has had opportunities to leave, but Mendenhall was made for this school. The Cougars are back because of Bronco.

32. Steve Fairchild, Colorado State. He has a strong blend of NFL and college experience, and he should make the Rams a contender again in the Mountain West.

34. Mike Sanford, UNLV. Sanford isn’t rattled by the challenge of making the Rebels competitive. And he’s about to turn the corner.

44. Dave Christensen*, Wyoming. Bob Devaney, Pat Dye, Fred Akers and Joe Tiller cut their teeth in Laramie. Is Christensen next?

45. Mike Locksley*, New Mexico. A master recruiter and smart tactician, Locksley is poised to thrive at this underrated program.

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