(Editor's note: University of Montana media release)
MISSOULA — Montana football head coach Bobby Hauck has added former Idaho State head coach and long-time Grizzly offensive coordinator Rob Phenicie to his staff as an offensive analyst, the University of Montana Athletic Department announced Wednesday.
Phenicie, who helped lead the Grizzlies to three national championship appearances under Hauck from 2003-2009, returns to Montana after seven seasons at ISU, with five spent as the Bengals' head coach from 2017-2021.
Prior to his time at Idaho State, Phenicie also coached under Hauck at UNLV from 2010-2014, serving as the Rebels' offensive coordinator, quarterbacks coach, and tight ends coach over the five-season span, helping lead the team to the 2014 Heart of Dallas Bowl.
Phenicie now reunites with Hauck at Montana, where together they won seven-straight Big Sky championships from '03-'09.
"I think we won the lottery a little bit in hiring Coach Phenicie as an offensive analyst for next fall. We're getting a guy that we're familiar with, who's been a head coach in our conference and a coordinator here at UM. I think he will really help us in terms of our schematic development, game planning, and self-analysis on what we're doing and how we're calling things," said Hauck.
"It's just such a home run for our team."
At Idaho State, Phenicie's offenses were consistently some of the most productive in the Big Sky. In his time as head coach, the Bengals produced nine first-team all-conference players, including Mitch Gueller, who would become the program's all-time leading receiver with 3,249 career yards. ISU quarterback Tyler Vander Waal was also named the league's newcomer of the year in the spring of 2021 with 1,843 passing yards and 12 touchdowns in six games.
Phenicie now returns to Montana where he coached several All-Americans during Montana's run to seven-straight FCS playoff appearances as UM's offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. During that time, he helped mentor legendary names like Craig Ochs, Marc Mariani, Chase Reynolds, Lex Hilliard, Cole Bergquist, and a host of future professional offensive linemen.
"Coach Hauck always said that you have a home here. It's fun to get back, seeing a lot of familiar faces and old friends, but just seeing the level of where this program has gone to since we left in '09 is pretty special," said Phenicie.
"My job is to supplement what coach (Timm) Rosenbach and the offensive staff does, give them an extra set of eyes, and alleviate some work in terms of looking at opponents and self-scouting to let them really focus on the task at hand.
"It's going to be fun being back in Missoula and in the Big Sky. I love this conference. It's a great, great, great level of football to be at, and I'm just excited to be back."