I have to admit that I never felt like the Bulldogs season would get to this point. Never did I think that I as a die hard Bulldog fan would be openly questioning our coach over the past ten years in the ways that I have over the past few days. Never did I think that I would lose all faith in the coach's decision making abilities during the course of a football game. Never did I think that the lower tier teams in the WAC would have a great chance of knocking off the once powerful Fresno State Bulldogs. Unfortunately those non-thinking times in my life have come back to bite me in the ass. I have a feeling that most Fresno State football fans feel the exact same way as I do right now.
We have all put our trust in a coach that we never felt would lead us in the wrong direction. We as fans have felt that Pat Hill is the type of coach we might be able to latch onto and enjoy the ride he is going to allow us to take. Unfortunately for any of us who felt this way we have to go back and assess what has happened here in Fresno this year. On Saturday the Washington Huskies lost to possibly the worst team in the nation in the Stanford Cardinal 20-3. Washington (who is recently removed from a 1-11 season in 2004) is now calling for their coaches head. This is the same Washington team that has been the doormat for the PAC-10 over the past four seasons. Instead of accepting the downright awful job Willingham is doing their fans are calling for someone else to lead the way and here is where the big difference between Fresno and Washington fans can be found: Very few fans in Washington are defending Willingham.
When I write a blog that objects to the way Pat Hill has coached this team I am not putting down his character or him as a person. When I write a blog that questions Pat Hill's in game decisions time and time again I am only questioning him as a leader of this football team. I am tired of people defending a man who is continually driving this program into the ground. Let's take a look at the course our football team has taken this season and add Pat Hill's thoughts into each game. First we started with a win against Nevada and we all know Pat Hill was pleased with the team effort in this game. If we skip to the Washington game it became apparent to many of us that Brandstater was playing injured yet Norton remained on the bench for this loss. We followed that loss with another to Colorado State in which Brandstater threw three awful interceptions. Even after a terrible game Brandstater was given the chance to play against Utah State and once again he disappointed by leading the Dogs to a 13-12 loss. With Brandstater putting up terrible pass after terrible pass he was still given the chance to start against Hawaii. This is because Pat Hill has stated time and time again that he is a one QB kind of guy. After Hawaii was given a 28-7 lead Hill finally made a change because there was nothing else left to do. Norton played a good second half against Hawaii and was given the chance to start the Boise and LSU games. Unfortunately after a terrible first half against Boise (Which was still far better than Brandstater played against NMSU in the first half) Norton was pulled for Brandstater. Hill has continually lied about his motives this season when all he had to do is come out and say he favors Brandstater. No most of us do not agree with Hill but we would respect him much more for being open and honest. After the NMSU win Hill made the point that we won the game. Brandstater will start next week once again and will play terrible. He is not a good QB and does not have the skills to lead us for the remainder of the season. But in Pat Hill's eyes we are a much better team with Brandstater at QB.
However, this problem goes much deeper into the team than the QB position. The offense has been pathetic to put it best and shows no signs of improving. Hill also thought it might be a good idea to pull McCauley last game to give the younger guys experience. I can at times understand playing the younger guys, but when you pull a NFL draft pick it makes me wonder where your priorities really lay. Does Hill really care what happens with this team? Does he care anymore if they win or lose? I honestly think he does not have the mindset to be a good head coach anymore. Unfortunately I know many Fresno State fans disagree with me. So I ask all of you who still somehow support this man to explain to me why you do. What is so great about a man who lies to the fans and cannot live with his word? What is so great about a man who leads a team to an average of a 7-5 record over his ten seasons as coach? Maybe you can explain to me what I am missing because when I think of Pat Hill I only think of the disappointment he has caused. I don't see the fire everyone else does and I certainly don't see the team leader he should be. Maybe it's just me but I am tired of watching the Bulldogs play the way they are and I know it isn't all on the players anymore. No one would win in this system and I just hope that the Bulldogs don't have to deal with it for too long or everything they have built over the past ten years will be lost. Just think it took nine years to turn us into a national name and it could take one stubborn man to unravel it all.