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#pounditThursday, September 23, 2021

Articles tagged: Texas Longhorns Football

Hudson Card named Texas starting quarterback

Texas Longhorns logo

The Texas Longhorns appear to have made their decision as to who the starting quarterback will be, at least for the season opener.

As first reported by Chip Brown of Horns247, redshirt freshman Hudson Card will get the nod for the Longhorns against Louisiana on Sept. 4. Card beat out redshirt junior Casey Thompson for the job.

Coach Steve Sarkisian informed the quarterbacks of the decision after Friday’s walkthrough, adding that both quarterbacks were going to play in the opener.

Thompson started camp getting most of the first team reps, but struggled with turnovers. That opened the door for Card, who impressed enough to win the job. Card was regarded as a four-star recruit coming out of high school and one of the top dual-threat quarterbacks in his class. The Longhorns are clearly putting a lot of faith in him by granting him the job at this stage of his career.

Texas fans! Steve Sarkisian is the new head coach of the Longhorns and promising a high-octane offense. Show some support for the squad with this great All Gas No Brakes shirt. It makes a perfect gift for yourself or a friend. You can buy it here:

Is this the real reason Nick Saban turned down Texas job?

Nick Saban

Nick Saban supposedly entertained the idea of leaving Alabama to coach at Texas years ago, but he ultimately turned down a massive offer from the Longhorns. We may now have a better understanding of why.

SEC Network host Paul Finebaum said during an appearance on the “Saturday Down South” podcast this week that there was one primary reason Saban turned down the Texas job in 2013. According to Finebaum, Saban felt there would be too many voices telling him what to do in Austin.

“The bottom line is they did want Saban and Saban was offered the job, and he considered it,” Finebaum said. “He said to me and to anybody who would confront him with this, that the reason he didn’t go to Texas — he said this privately, he didn’t say this publicly — was he did not want to have to answer to 10 or 15 different boosters who all felt like they owned the franchise. It was a little of a Jerry Jones complex or a T. Boone Pickens complex in college football in the past.”

Finebaum noted that the issue has always “haunted Texas.” He said it was also a problem at Alabama before Saban arrived in 2007, but Saban came in and made it clear that “I run this place.” He probably could have done the same at Texas, but he chose not to.

For what it’s worth, a story we heard a couple years back made it sound like Mack Brown was responsible for Saban not going to Texas. We may never know the real reason.

Video: Texas senator zings Longhorns over move to SEC

Lois Kolkhorst

A Texas state senator zinged the Longhorns over their planned move to the SEC.

Senator Lois Kolkhorst was grilling University of Texas at Austin president Jay Hartzell as part of a senate select committee on the future of college sports in Texas. She asked Hartzell how big his school’s athletic budget was.

Then Kolkhorst zinged Hartzell by saying the Texas athletic budget was over $200 million despite the football team losing. She noted they were 3-7 against her alma mater TCU (since 1995).

Kolkhorst twisted in the knife by saying maybe Texas’ fan base “would rather lose to Alabama than TCU.”

Texas has been taking shots from all comers over their planned move. That’s not deterring them.

Texas and Oklahoma seem to be casting tradition, rivalries and the overall health of college football aside in order to chase a big payoff from the SEC. Fans of the two schools will likely need to get used to more losing when they’re facing much tougher competition across multiple sports.

Texas’ Longhorn Network expected to be sunset as part of SEC deal

Texas Longhorns logo

The Big 12 will suffer a major casualty when Texas and Oklahoma leave for the SEC, and they will also be losing a television network in the process.

The Longhorn Network was launched in 2011 to focus on, naturally, Texas athletics. Texas president Jay Hartzell essentially admitted on Monday that there will be no use for the network after the school moves from the Big 12 to the SEC.

Why? The biggest reason is the SEC already has its own network. Like the Longhorn Network, the SEC Network is affiliated with ESPN. Keeping both simply wouldn’t make sense.

Texas and Oklahoma may not move to the SEC until 2025, which is when their current media rights deal with the Big 12 expires. The Big 12 is going to be in rough shape when the realignment does happen, and it may open the door for other major changes in college athletics.

Baylor AD hilariously shades Texas over move to SEC

Baylor

Baylor athletic director Mack Rhoades is trying to put a brave face on as the Big 12 ponders its future. He did so by taking a pretty funny shot at Texas.

Rhoades commented on Texas’ impending move to the SEC on Monday. He acknowledged the national narrative was that it was the Longhorns’ arrogance that drove them to make the conference switch, but disputed it. In his mind, this just shows that Texas needs a bit more confidence in itself.

Well, that’s one way to look at it. It’s certainly true that Texas had a hard road to the College Football Playoff from the Big 12, but that had as much to do with their general lack of success as anything else.

The better reaction is probably this one from Steve Spurrier, which is definitely more aligned with the notion that the Longhorns are a little too high on themselves. Rhoades can think what he wants, but the fact that the Big 12’s survival is a fair question after Texas and Oklahoma leave suggests that he’s not quite correct here.

Steve Spurrier takes shot at Texas over move to SEC

Steve Spurrier

It has now been five years since Steve Spurrier last coached college football, but the Hall of Famer has not lost his knack for talking trash. He reminded us of that when he shared his thoughts on Texas and Oklahoma potentially joining the SEC.

Edgar Thompson of the Orlando Sentinel asked Spurrier about Texas and Oklahoma applying for SEC membership, and the 76-year-old seized the opportunity to take a shot at the Longhorns.

“I can understand Texas jumping over,” Spurrier said. “They get to play Texas A&M again. They get to … they can’t win the Big 12 anyway. I think they’ve only won two in the last 30 years or so. What is it?”

Spurrier was close. Texas has won the Big 12 just three times since 1996. They have not captured a Big 12 title since 2009, when Mack Brown was the coach. The Longhorns have won more than eight games in a season just once since Brown left in 2013, though they have won four straight bowl games. Texas hired Steve Sarkisian this offseason as its third coach in the last seven years.

Spurrier coached in the SEC at Florida and South Carolina. He won a championship with the Gators in 1996. He knows how tough the conference is, and he’s right that Texas could struggle mightily at first. He also doesn’t understand why Oklahoma would want to join the SEC aside from money.

“I just don’t think they’re going to come over to the SEC and win with any regularity the way that they win the Big 12,” Spurrier said of the Sooners. “Their fans might say, ‘Yeah, now we can beat Alabama and LSU and all these dudes.’ It may not happen like that.”

If you remember the comment he made during college football season last year, you know that Spurrier always keeps his finger on the pulse of the sport. He’s not the only one who is skeptical of Texas and Oklahoma trying to take on the SEC.

Texas fans! Steve Sarkisian is the new head coach of the Longhorns and promising a high-octane offense. Show some support for the squad with this great All Gas No Brakes shirt. It makes a perfect gift for yourself or a friend. You can buy it here:

Texas, Oklahoma essentially confirm Big 12 departure in joint statement

Texas Longhorns logo

It has been widely reported that Texas and Oklahoma are planning to leave the Big 12 to join the SEC, and the two schools have now all but confirmed that publicly.

On Monday, Texas and Oklahoma issued a joint statement announcing they have notified the Big 12 that they will not extend their grant of media rights beyond 2025, which is when the current deal expires. While the statement did not explicitly say the two schools will leave the conference, the message is clear.

That may sound like it places an official date on when Texas and Oklahoma will leave the Big 12. However, USA Today’s Dan Wolken notes that the schools have a legal obligation to honor the grant of rights through 2025, but they could explore ways to leave the Big 12 sooner.

The Big 12 will have little relevance nationally when Texas and Oklahoma leave. That is why the conference is reportedly considering merging with another Power Five conference. Either way, a major shakeup is coming in college athletics.

Did Steve Sarkisian know about SEC talks before taking Texas job?

Steve Sarkisian

Texas appears to be on the verge of moving from the Big 12 to the SEC, which would be an exciting shift for a program that is hoping for a brighter future under its new head coach. It also raises the question of whether that new head coach knew about the potential conference shakeup before he took the job.

Steve Sarkisian was announced as the head coach of the Longhorns back in January. Kirk Bohls of the Austin American-Statesman said on Friday that a Big 12 source told him Texas and Oklahoma have been discussing a move to the SEC for “a minimum of six months.” That would mean the talks began either before or around the same time Texas was working out a deal with Sarkisian.

Sarkisian served as the offensive coordinator under Nick Saban prior to being hired by Texas. He has no experience in the Big 12, but he is certainly familiar with the SEC. He also took several Alabama assistants with him to Texas. We doubt the prospect of the Longhorns joining the SEC would have swayed Sarkisian one way or the other, but the timing is noteworthy.

Texas is one of the most prestigious jobs in the country, with or without the SEC. They have a massive fanbase, winning tradition, and outstanding financial resources. Sarkisian is trying to prove he can win at a high level again after he was fired at USC because of alcohol issues more than five years ago.

Again, Sark probably would have taken the Texas job anyway. But if he did know about the potential conference shakeup, it may have made the position that much more appealing.

Texas fans! Steve Sarkisian is the new head coach of the Longhorns and promising a high-octane offense. Show some support for the squad with this great All Gas No Brakes shirt. It makes a perfect gift for yourself or a friend. You can buy it here:

Report: Texas, Oklahoma moving to SEC nearly a done deal

Texas Longhorns logo

The strongest athletic conference in college sports appears to be on the verge of getting even stronger, as momentum continues to build toward Texas and Oklahoma joining the SEC.

Kirk Bohls of the Austin American-Statesman reported on Friday that Texas and Oklahoma moving from the Big 12 to the SEC is “almost done.” An announcement could be made as early as next week. Bohls also noted that talks about the move began roughly six months ago, and Texas A&M has not been a part of them.

It was first reported on Wednesday that Texas and Oklahoma were looking to join the SEC. One theory is that Texas A&M officials may have leaked the story hoping that political forces and fans would push back against the conference shakeup and potentially scuttle it.

As of now, Texas A&M is the only school from Texas in the SEC. That gives the Aggies a major advantage with recruiting. Adding the Longhorns to the conference has the potential to set Texas A&M back significantly.

It sounds like Texas A&M is going to have to deal with it. While having Texas in the same conference could be an obstacle for the Aggies, we know who the biggest losers will be if and when the shakeup becomes official.

Texas, Oklahoma leaving for SEC would leave Big 12 mostly irrelevant

Big 12 conference

The SEC has already pulled ahead of the pack when it comes to athletic dominance in many prominent college sports. They generally have the best teams, most resources, and best fan support in football, baseball and softball, among other sports. Other conferences have competitive programs of course, and none of this means every school in the SEC is better than all schools elsewhere. But on the whole, the SEC is the big leagues compared to other conferences.

Two of the programs that could match up with the SEC in terms of competitiveness across sports, resources, and fan support, are Texas and Oklahoma. Those schools appear poised to leave the Big 12 for the SEC.

Not only would that further cement the SEC as the most prominent conference in major college athletics, but it would completely weaken the Big 12, making that conference nearly irrelevant.

Texas and Oklahoma are the power schools in the Big 12, especially in football. The conference already was down to 10 teams after four left last decade. They will be down to eight schools if Texas and Oklahoma leave:

– Baylor
– Iowa State
– Kansas
– Kansas State
– Oklahoma State
– TCU
– Texas Tech
– West Virginia

TCU and West Virginia were recent additions to the conference after Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Texas A&M left. They might be able to easily leave given their lack of long ties to the conference. The more likely scenario would be the Big 12 hunting for other schools to fill the spots. Houston and SMU might be natural additions.

Oklahoma State and TCU have had good football programs for quite some time. Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas State, Texas Tech and West Virginia have also had their moments in recent history. The conference would still have some decent football, but without Oklahoma and Texas, they would completely lack a national respect. They would be regarded as a second-tier conference that wouldn’t factor into the championship picture in college football.