Mickey Mental was named the 12th head coach in Weber State football history on Dec. 20, 2022. Mental served one season as the offensive coordinator for the Wildcats, but was promoted after former head coach Jay Hill accepted the BYU defensive coordinator role after the 2022 season.
“I’m one of those guys that I’m where my feet are, and at the end of the day, I love coaching ball and that is at the forefront of everything,” Mental told Zach McKinnell of The Bluebloods when asked if he was pursuing a head coaching job before Jay Hill left for BYU. “If anything happens, it happens, but I’m where my feet are at. I just come to work, enjoy my time and try to effect all these young men’s lives.”
Mental previously served as the head coach at Notre Dame College for two seasons (2020-21) at the Division-II level. He won two consecutive Mountain East championships and was named the 2020 Mountain East Coach of the Year. Over his two seasons with the Falcons, Mental compiled a 16-2 overall record and finished 14-1 in conference play.
“It was different… I was going through COVID, so nobody had any of that figured out at the time,” Mental said about his biggest learning experiences at Notre Dame College. “Just the culture of a big family, loving one another, and doing what we love and competing at the highest level and bringing energy and excitement each and every day. I think that’s it… That’s my core values and it’s one of the reasons I came here (Weber State). They had those values in place and I’m just trying to obviously keep that ship going.”
One of the biggest storylines this offseason will be the quarterback battle for the Wildcats. Bronson Barron announced his transfer to Western Kentucky this offseason after throwing for 2,529 passing yards and 21 touchdowns in 2022. Creyton Cooper, Kylan Weisser, Brian Harper and Jakob Hollinhshaus will all battle for the QB1 position this spring. Mental spoke about his expectations for the quarterbacks and what he wants to see throughout spring practice from the position group.
“They’re all true competitors,” Mental said about the quarterback room. “They all know how to win, so that’s half the battle and then it’s real simple for me. Don’t turn the ball over, stay on schedule and make the play when the play is given. Then when you have to ad-lib… Be that guy that can ad-lib and make something out of nothing. But, for me, it’s about taking care of the football and being efficient each and every down.”
Weber State made an appearance in the second round of the FCS Playoffs last season and the expectation surrounding the program is to make runs to the FCS Playoffs year in and year out. Mental spoke about living up to the standards at Weber State and why trusting the process is key for the Wildcats entering the 2023 season.
“It’s always about trusting the process,” Mental said about his message to the team about expectations in 2023. “For me, I live it by just taking one day at a time and understanding that you don’t have to win a national championship in March, but it’s a process. Our expectation is simple… How do we reset our standard each and every day and get better? The results will come off of that, but the only thing we really are concerned about is are we living up to the standard each and every day. If we can do that, I feel really good about the culture here, the players and the coaching staff.”
The Mickey Mental era at Weber State begins on Sep. 9 against Northern Iowa at the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls, Iowa. The Wildcats still have an open date on Sep. 2 in Week 1, but a game has not been announced.