It's Major Applewhite's Time to Shine for the Texas Longhorns

By Marian Hinton
Matthew Emmons: USA Today Sports Images

Texas Longhorns co-offensive coordinator, Bryan Harsin, has accepted the head-coaching position with Arkansas State. As expected, fellow co-offensive coordinator and former Longhorn quarterback Major Applewhite will now step into the role as the offensive play-caller while wide receivers coach Darrell Wyatt will fill the role of co-offensive coordinator. The Longhorns will look to bring in a new running backs coach, a position previously held by Major before his promotion to play-caller.

Major Applewhite first rose to stardom with the Texas Longhorns when the undersized, third-string quarterback was thrown into action in just the second game of his freshman season. Due to his passion, intensity, and reputation as an over-acheiver, he immediately became a fan favorite. One of his greatest moments came when he, alongside Ricky Williams, led the Longhorns as they snapped the No. 7 ranked Nebraksa Cornhuskers 47-game home winning streak in Lincoln.

Despite Major earning Big 12 Freshman of the Year honors in 1998 and Big 12 Co-Offensive Player of the Year honors in 1999, he was replaced by heralded 5-star recruit Chris Simms, leading to the greatest quarterback controversy in school history.

It was then that Major became a Longhorn legend, forever beloved by the fans.

After graduating, Applewhite worked as a graduate assistant at Texas before heading to Syracuse University to serve as the quarterbacks coach under former Texas defensive coordinator, Greg Robinson. After just one season, Major was offered the role of offensive coordinator at Rice University before joining the Alabama Crimson Tide as the offensive coordinator under Nick Saban.

Eager to return to Texas, however, Applewhite accepted the position of running backs coach for the Longhorns the following season. Three years later, and two seasons ago, he was named co-offensive coordinator along-side Bryan Harsin, though Harsin was the one responsible for play-calling.

Now, with Harsin leaving Texas, Major will take over the offensive reigns. He has earned a reputation as an outstanding recruiter and the players, coaches, and fans love him. In fact, there are many members of the Longhorn Nation who feel that “The Major” is being groomed to take over for current head-coach Mack Brown when he decides to retire, which could be within the next year or two.

Applewhite has always been a favorite among Texas fans, and now they will have chance to see what he can do as the No. 1 offensive play-caller for the Longhorns. Again, there is a very good chance that he could be auditioning for a future position as the next head-coach for his Alma Mater, a position that would be the ultimate for the young coach that bleeds burnt orange.


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