How long before Texas or other legacy programs change coaches again?
Don't get me wrong here, I think Steve Sarkisian is one hell of a good offensive football coach and in the right place, could make for a very good head coach.
It's just that the University of Texas is not that place.
Hey, maybe I'll be proven wrong here--I'd be ok with it. But given the Longhorns track record over the past decade or so, I don't think I am.
For reasons unclear to most of us not living in the area around Austin, Texas, the Longhorns consider themselves some sort of "elite" program and much like most mid-level SEC teams, the leash is short. Very, very short. Like two to three years short.
Again, that's not to say Sark won't be the guy to break the string. After kicking out Mack Brown in 2013 for not winning enough AFTER winning a national title, Charlie Strong was the next man up. Strong did not do well. Tom Herman was next and every year we heard "Is this the year Texas is back?"
The answer after three years was---no....
I don't know in full detail, how many mega-donors have their hands in the cookie jar so-to-speak but it appears their sway with current Athletic Director Chris Del Conte is pretty big.
It was super weird seeing the "tepid" he's still our coach statement from Del Conte before the season ended and after his no-so low key pursuit of Urban Meyer was turned down. For reasons unclear--Del Conte then waited until the season ended some three weeks later to pull the plug.
For what its worth--I suspect he waited until AFTER the early signing period to make the announcement for a reason. He wanted someone in place when recruiting was still a thing.
Again--I guess I could be wrong, but its the best explanation I can think of.
Hey, it's entirely possible Sarkisian breathes some life into the program and gets them over the ump. 7-5 or 8-4 seasons don't appear to be enough for the Longhorns, but what constitutes success.
A couple of weeks ago on our College Football podcast The Review, Brother Wilkie made a comment about the Texas job requiring a coach to make not an AD happy or a school president but rather the nine or so boosters who seem to have the final say in everything.
It's that kind of decision making that separates the old-school programs from the current successes in my opinion. Continuity in leadership goes a long, long way in making a team, program or for that matter a business successful and that means not firing the leaders every two years if you don't see the success you think you should be having.
Building a successful program takes leadership and buy in from everyone, not just the players. Without the final decision makers being on the same page as everyone else nobody is going to be happy any of the time.
And that is a problem.
In college football, it's why Nebraska was once a power but hasn't been in going on decades. It's why a Florida State, a Miami, a USC and others have gone from success to just being "another team".
Until they hire someone who can start the job, build and maintain success without interference and have some results on the field, nothing ever changes.
It applies to football or any other team sport. It applies to business and life too. Change doesn't happen overnight and neither does success. Just ask some of these "legacy" football programs or pretty much anyone not named Alabama in the SEC. Changing coaches because they aren't what you hoped doesn't always solve the problem.
It just sucks that so many schools can't see that forest due to all the trees.