Ault in September 2009
|Team||Kansas City Chiefs|
November 8, 1946 |
San Bernardino, California
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|Churchill County HS (NV) (assistant)
Bishop Manogue HS (NV)
Reno HS (NV)
Kansas City Chiefs (consultant)
|Administrative career (AD unless noted)|
|Head coaching record|
College Football Data Warehouse
|Accomplishments and honors|
Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year (1991)
6x Conference Coach of the Year
|College Football Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2002 (profile)
Chris Ault (born November 8, 1946) is a former college football head coach of the University of Nevada Wolf Pack and currently a consultant for the Kansas City Chiefs. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2002, seven years after his first retirement from coaching in 1995.
Ault is credited as the creator of the "Pistol Offense", which he instituted at Nevada in 2005. Since becoming the primary offense for Nevada, the Pistol has been used by other schools across the country. The San Francisco 49ers began employing the pistol offense with the emergence of former Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Since installing the Pistol, Nevada has won shares of two WAC titles—in 2005 (with Boise State) and 2010 (with Boise State and Hawaiʻi).
Ault previously served as head coach from 1976 to 1992 and from 1994 to 1995, guiding the Wolf Pack from Division II to Division I-AA to Division I-A. He also served as Nevada's athletic director from 1986 to 2004, and was the school's starting quarterback from 1965 to 1967.
After the 2004 season, Ault fired head coach Chris Tormey. He named himself as the replacement three days later, with the approval of school president John Lilley and the Nevada Board of Regents. A member of the university's faculty senate expressed concern at the perceived conflict of interest, especially because the salary of head football coach exceeded that of athletic director.
On December 28, 2012, Ault announced his retirement, effective at the end of the year. In an emotional press conference, Ault said the time had come to pass the program to a new coach. He had spent 41 years--all but seven years of his adult life--at Nevada as a player, coach, or administrator.
Head coaching record
|Nevada Wolf Pack (NCAA Division II Independent) (1976–1977)|
|Nevada Wolf Pack (NCAA Division I-AA Independent) (1978)|
|1978||Nevada||11–1||NCAA Division I-AA Semifinals|
|Nevada Wolf Pack (Big Sky Conference) (1979–1991)|
|1979||Nevada||8–4||5–2||2nd||NCAA Division I-AA Semifinals|
|1983||Nevada||9–5||6–1||1st||NCAA Division I-AA Semifinals|
|1985||Nevada||11–2||6–1||T-1st||NCAA Division I-AA Semifinals|
|1986||Nevada||13–1||7–0||1st||NCAA Division I-AA Semifinals|
|1990||Nevada||13–2||7–1||1st||NCAA Division I-AA Runner-Up|
|1991||Nevada||12–1||8–0||1st||NCAA Division I-AA Quarterfinals|
|Nevada Wolf Pack (Big West Conference) (1992)|
|1992||Nevada||7–5||5–1||1st||L Las Vegas|
|Nevada Wolf Pack (Big West Conference) (1994–1995)|
|1995||Nevada||9–3||7–0||1st||L Las Vegas|
|Nevada Wolf Pack (Western Athletic Conference) (2004–2011)|
|2006||Nevada||8–5||5–3||T–3rd||L MPC Computers|
|2007||Nevada||6–7||4–4||T–4th||L New Mexico|
|2010||Nevada||13–1||7–1||T–1st||W Kraft Fight Hunger||13||11|
|Nevada Wolf Pack (Mountain West Conference) (2012)|
|2012||Nevada||7–6||4–4||5th||L New Mexico|
|National championship Conference title Conference division title|
|†Indicates BCS bowl, Bowl Alliance or Bowl Coalition game. #Rankings from final Coaches' Poll.|
Ault graduated from St. Catherine's Military School, graduated from Nevada with a bachelor's degree in Education in 1968, and went on to complete an MBA in 1971. He is married to Kathy Ault, and has three children: Lisa, Chris Jr., and Amy.
- List of college football coaches with 200 wins
- List of college football head coaches with non-consecutive tenure