Jay Hill The Perfect Candidate To Take Over Reigns In Cache Valley

Nov 9, 2020, 2:59 PM | Updated: 3:00 pm
Jay Hill, Weber State, BYU Football...
Reports indicate that BYU has hired Weber State head coach Jay Hill to be the next defensive coordinator. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Weber State Head Football coach Jay Hill is the perfect candidate to take over the vacant job at Utah State. Hill has proven himself since joining the Wildcats some six years ago and is destined to begin his next coaching chapter.

I would like to preface this article by stating that I – Tom Hackett, has had the privilege of watching Hill develop as a coach and as a man over the past eight years.

For those that are unaware, in 2011 Hill called my home phone in Melbourne, Australia and offered me a position within the Utah Football program. He was the first person I got to know when I left my family and traveled State-side in 2012.

Since then, my relationship with Hill has progressed. We are friends who occasionally enjoy a round of golf alongside one and other and frequently talk about the game of college football and how it has progressed.

In-State Recruiting

The coach of a school such as Utah State must rely on recruiting the state in which they find themselves. If the future head football coach of Utah State has not proven that they cannot recruit the state of Utah then the chances of Utah State winning is slim.


Fortunately, Hill has proven that he can recruit. Well before he became the face of the Weber State Wildcats, Hill was working as an assistant under Kyle Whittingham at Utah when Rivals.com announced that Hill was one of the top 25 recruiters in the country in 2009 as well as a top 10 Pac-12 recruit in 2012.

The West Coast has become familiar territory for Hill on the recruiting trail. In particular, Utah, Nevada, California and Idaho who has all produced some very fine players for Hill and his staff.

Utah State is a smaller program that must rely on local in-state talent. Unlike Utah, for example, who has transformed their recruitment and put a much greater emphasis on states such as California, Texas and Florida. Utah State does not have the firepower or name to breach other states with the same impact that Utah can.

Hill has proven that he can win within the state of Utah and that he can transform a culture. When he took over the job at Weber State the program was coming off back-to-back two-win seasons. The culture of the program was on fire and the players and coaches were lost seeking any and all answers.

Hill took over the role and immediately went to work. He inflicted belief and confidence in a playing group that had never understood just how challenging winning can be.

Winning, in any sport, is difficult. It takes effort and time. You must dedicate yourself to your craft and maintain a belief that everything will work out in your favor.


His relationship with current Utah State Assistant Vice President and Deputy Athletic Director Jerry Bovee is also worthy of a conversation. Bovee hired Hill in 2014 when he was the AD at Weber State. The two became very close and have continued their friendship despite Bovee moving north to Logan.

Bovee works alongside Utah State President and AD John Hartwell, who will ultimately have the final say on who the next coach becomes. Hartwell needs to look no further than Bovee to figure out just what sort of coach Hill is.

A Players Coach

Lastly, and most importantly, he is a players coach. He loves his players, he looks at them like he looks at his own children.

Take me for an example, Hill was only at Utah for my first two years before departing for Weber State but we have always stayed in contact. If I call, I can trust that he will answer.

I have seen first hand just how Hill interacts with his assistant coaches and players.

He demands excellence and sets the standard high. But at the end of the day, he just wants everyone to have fun succeeding – whether that be on the football field, in the classroom, or within your personal life.



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Jay Hill The Perfect Candidate To Take Over Reigns In Cache Valley