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#pounditSunday, January 16, 2022

Texas Tech boosters considering bad boy Art Briles?

Art Briles coaches at Baylor

Texas Tech is searching for a new head coach after Matt Wells was fired on Monday, and they may have one very polarizing name on their short list of candidates.

Former Baylor head coach Art Briles has been mentioned several times now in connection to the Texas Tech job. According to one report, the program’s boosters want Briles — badly.

That meshes with what Mac Engel of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported earlier in the week. Engel says he was told by multiple sources that powerful people at Texas Tech rounded up some money last December to buy out Wells’ contract. They also supposedly want athletic director Kirby Hocutt gone. The goal is to clear a path to bring in Briles, who is a Texas Tech alum.

Boosters are not the only ones who make coaching hire decisions, but money is certainly an important factor. According to Engel, Briles was also discussed as a potential candidate when Kliff Kingsbury was fired in 2018.

Briles enjoyed a successful tenure as the head coach at Baylor from 2008-2015. The team went 32-7 over his final three seasons, but he was fired in 2016 after multiple players were accused of sexual assault. The school was alleged to have acted inappropriately by either looking the other way or outright covering up the allegations during his tenure. Briles filed a wrongful termination suit against Baylor after his firing and received a settlement.

Briles most recently coached at Mount Vernon High School in Texas. He is viewed as untouchable by many, but he’s a Texas Tech alum with deep ties to the state. Perhaps the Red Raiders will ignore the certain backlash and give Briles another chance.

Photo: Nov 8, 2014; Norman, OK, USA; Baylor Bears head coach Art Briles before the game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Gaylord Family – Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

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