Report: Opposing coaches defend Strong, crush Brown & upperclassmen
Texas Longhorns coach Charlie Strong is never going to acknowledge the depths to which the program had sunk under Mack Brown when he was hired following the 2013 season. As recently as Monday during his weekly news conference, Strong reiterated that he will "never" blame Brown for the state of the team today.
The Longhorns are 1-4 and 0-2 in the Big 12 as they head into Saturday’s Red River Rivalry game against No. 10 Oklahoma. Strong acknowledged Monday that the situation does "look gloomy," but maintained his belief things will turn around.
While Strong has no interest in belaboring a past that can’t be undone, opposing coaches, provided anonymity by Sports Illustrated’s Pete Thamel and Thayer Evans, reportedly criticized Brown and his staff for not signing quality players and for an atmosphere of entitlement that has led to public conflicts with the younger athletes.
"In two years, Charlie could not have f—– that place up," a coach told SI. "It was already f—- up before."
"Mack knew the s— going on, he just didn’t want to own up to it," another coach said. "He knows what he left."
@rodbabers a lot of it is the truth big bro don't be oblivious.. the place was a mess
— Quandre Diggs (@qdiggs6) October 8, 2015
Oh I know it was, fully agree. Just sayin when I criticized Mack, I did it to his face & put my name on it. https://t.co/PlAIQCGJMH
— Rod Babers (@rodbabers) October 9, 2015
Another coach said: "(University of Texas) kids have always been entitled. They’ve been given everything. They’re usually four- and five-star recruits that don’t feel like they have to work. They just thought they could show up."
Strong came to Texas touting his five core values and dismissed nine players by late September 2014. Texas finished 6-7. This season started with a 38-3 blowout loss at Notre Dame, an embarrassment that forced Strong to strip co-offensive coordinator Shawn Watson of his play-calling duties and bench starting quarterback Tyrone Swoopes in favor of redshirt freshman Jerrod Heard.
Texas showed signs of a spark as it then lost consecutive heartbreakers that featured special-teams errors against Cal and Oklahoma State. A 50-7 whipping at TCU last week sent the good vibes crashing. Player infighting dominated Monday’s weekly news conference, a rift seemingly between the younger players and the older ones. The SI report says opposing coaches could sense the rift.
Part of the problem at UT is a lack of leadership from the players, one coach pointed out.
"(Texas) doesn’t have any dogs," the coach said. "They don’t have anyone that will stand up and say, ‘F— this bull—-, let’s go kick these f——‘ a–."
A coach also blamed the upperclassmen, in general, for no longer caring.
"None of the older guys are going to the NFL, so you can tell most of them really don’t care," the coach told SI.