Typically, when searching for the biggest surprise in a major football conference, you will see an unranked team climb their way into the Top 25. In the Big 12, however, there aren’t any surprisingly good teams that weren’t supposed to be, but there is a bad one.
The Texas Longhorns have always been a dominant program, one of the main faces of college football. That was the past, though, and the present isn’t favorable for them. Even with a victory over their biggest rival, the Oklahoma Sooners, the Longhorns remain a complete mess with many questions left to be answered. Texas ranks 104th nationally in total defense, down 35 spots from last season. Offensively, the Longhorns have no stability and it reflects in their 118th national ranking. Teams aren’t afraid to play Texas; they look at the Longhorns as a good chance to get a win.
This year, the Longhorns have struggled on and even off the field. They are uncompetitive in most games which falls on the coaching staff. Charlie Strong has to motivate them every game, and has failed to do so. With blowout losses to Notre Dame, Texas Christian University and Iowa State, the Longhorns find themselves in unfamiliar territory sitting at 3-5 overall. Players are tweeting about transferring at halftime, with no disciplinary action taken. Texas is a complete mess and it starts with leadership. After the blowout loss to Iowa State, there is reason to fear the Longhorns may not win another game, including an upcoming matchup against the winless Kansas Jayhawks.
With movement in the athletic department, Strong is on the hot seat. Despite this and the lack of success, it wouldn’t be a wise move for the incoming athletic director to fire Strong; he hasn’t had enough time. Although it doesn’t look good for the Longhorns, the best bet is to keep Strong for now.
Conversely, though, the best move for the coach would be to consider looking elsewhere if possible, as things are looking bright for the Longhorns. The Miami Hurricanes have an available position, which would allow Strong to move back east, and recruit in Florida where he has had great success.
Gone are the winning and disciplined days of Mack Brown, in are the days of Charlie Strong and a team that is at a loss on offense and completely incompetent on defense. The Longhorns are a long way from being competitive in the Big 12 Conference, and even further away from being a power nationally. Without the right coach and players, you can continue watch a tradition-rich program crumble right before your very eyes.