Paul Hackett (born July 5, 1947 in Burlington, Vermont) is an American football coach who served both as the University of Pittsburgh and University of Southern California's head football coach during the 1990s. From 1989 to 1992 he led the University of Pittsburgh Panthers and from 1998 until 2000, the USC Trojans prior to Pete Carroll taking over. Between his two head coaching stints, Hackett served as the offensive coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs from 1993 to 1997.
Hackett began his coaching career at his alma mater, UC Davis, in 1969, assisting the freshmen in the first year and then directing them to a 13-0 mark over the next two seasons under College Football Hall of Fame coach Jim Sochor. He then was an assistant at California for four years (1972-75), the first season as a graduate assistant, the next as the receivers coach and the final two as the quarterbacks coach. Then, at age 29, he moved to USC for five years (1976-80) as an assistant coach under John Robinson; Hackett would succeed Robinson at USC after the latter's second tenure as head coach.
Hackett three year tenure started in 1998, where he guided the Trojans to the Sun Bowl; losing in a major upset to TCU. Hackett's final two years at the school were difficult, as the fans and alumni base turned against him. His 1999 and 2000 Trojans football teams were the first USC teams to have consecutive non-winning seasons since 1960-61. The 2000 team was tied for last place in the Pacific-10 Conference. His winning percentage as USC coach was .514, compared to the school's then all-time win percentage of .691. USC fired Hackett on November 27, 2000; to do so, it spent $800,000 to buy out the remaining two years of his five-year, $3.5-million contract.