There’s no official word yet, but it seems like the early assumptions that Charlie Strong will bolt his Louisville job for the one in Austin and become the head coach of the Texas Longhorns are true, as he’s already notified his current employers of his desire to join the Big 12 team.
According to a source that spoke to ESPN’s Brett McMurphy, Strong has already told athletic director Tom Jurich that he’ll be taking the Texas job offered to him, which includes buying out his contract for $5 million.
When will it be officially announced? Texas are likely to announce his hiring on Sunday and make it even “more official” with a press conference on Monday, trying to steal some thunder from the BCS Championship game.
Strong, 53, has been the head coach of Louisville for the last four season, posting a 37-15 record. He led them to an 11-2 season in 2012 which ended with the Cardinals winning the Sugar Bowl (beating Texas). Louisville were strong candidates to finish the season undefeated entering the 2013 season, but lost one game (to UCF, the eventual Fiesta Bowl winners) and ended up with a 12-1 record, winning another bowl game, this time against Miami.
Strong will be joining the richest program in college football, but one that’s been facing some disappointing times in recent years. Texas haven’t been able to win more than nine games since making the national championship game of the 2009 season. Over the last four years they’ve gone only 18-17 in the Big 12, and Mack Brown paid the price, although he was allowed to leave at his own terms.
Strong has turned Louisville (along with their soft schedule) into one of the best defensive teams in the nation, ranked in the top 10 nationally in most categories. Texas have been awful on defense over the last three years. Signs of improvement this season were countered by some terrible quarterback play from Case McCoy who is leaving the school.
Just like he helped make Teddy Bridgewater into possibly the best quarterback in College Football (especially in his pro readiness), Texas will expect him to do the same with their current and future crops, but becoming the leading school in the conference, which also means threatening the national title, is his top priority and measuring stick.