AUSTIN, Texas – Charlie Strong left a Louisville program that needed to punch its way into the national spotlight for the Texas Longhorns, who live smack in the middle with their enormous wealth, swagger, political intrigue and championship expectations.
And that’s just the off-the-field stuff.
On the field, he inherits a team mired in mediocrity with a 30-21 record over the last four years but still talented enough to come within 30 minutes of winning a share of the 2013 Big 12 title.
Strong will be introduced as the Texas football coach today. In a statement released by the school Sunday, Strong said he was excited to be taking over one of the premier programs in the country.
Texas is one of those places that is always on your radar and a program anyone would dream of being a part of because you have a chance to compete on a national level every year, Strong said. It’s special because it has such great history, pride, tradition and passion for football.
In the 53-year-old Strong – the first black head coach of a men’s program at Texas – new athletic director Steve Patterson landed a coach whose teams went 23-3 the last two years, including a BCS bowl win over Florida and a blowout of Miami to end this season in the Russell Athletic Bowl.
That Strong will be the first African-American head coach of a men’s program at Texas is significant.
This is a historic day for The University of Texas and a historic hire for our football team, university president Bill Powers said.