The Lobos have announced that they will terminate head coach Ritchie McKay's contract at the end of this season, which comes as no surprise to me. The Lobos are currently 15-13 on the season and only 4-9 in Mountain West play.
Now will Utah be next? Giacoletti has had two losing seasons in a row, his Utes have the exact same conference record as the Lobos and Utah was actually picked to finish higher than New Mexico in the preseason conference media poll. While I don't expect the Utes to announce Giacoletti's firing until after the season, this movement by New Mexico does make things interesting. Will the two schools battle it out when it comes to hiring a coach? And if they do, will Utah have a leg up? The last time the Utes went head to head with a Mountain West team for a coach was back in 2004, when they went after former Atlanta Hawks coach Lon Kruger. Of course he turned Utah down and decided to coach at UNLV, which seems to have worked out well for him, as the Rebels are well on their way back to the NCAA Tournament.
Though I question whether this will happen, it was reported not too long ago that former Utah coach Rick Majerus was interested in coaching the Lobos if the job were to open. Of course Majerus has been known to show interest in just about every vacant job on the planet. I think I actually read he was seriously considering accepting the position of secretary of defense when Donny Rumsfield was fired last November.
I actually expect more Mountain West teams to fire their head coaches, especially Wyoming and Utah. This is a very exciting time, but it also can prove to be disastrous. Most Ute fans think this program's name carries weight and that will be put to the test. If Mike Montgomery decides to take the Lobos job over Utah, what does that say about our program? Even though a change is needed for Utah basketball, that doesn't necessarily mean the program will improve. But I guess that's what makes the coaching carousel such a fun experience. In Hill We Trust.