Nowadays, most Texas fans aren’t very greedy when it comes to what they want from their program. With volleyball, swimming and diving and men’s golf being the only successful programs in the last half-decade or so, the bar has been set pretty low. But this is the time of year to make a wish list and ask for what you want.
Now let me say this list could be extremely long, but I tried to sum it up in just a few points as it relates to the feelings of the majority of Longhorn nation.
A Permanent Athletic Director
Ever since Steve Patterson was fired about a year and a half ago, Mike Perrin has been the leader of the athletic department on an interim basis. He’s done a good job behind the scenes by most accounts, but he’s definitely shown his lack of AD experience when it comes to the things fans care about most.
Perrin completely botched the baseball head coach search. He may or may not have negotiating power with the coaches. The president doesn’t necessarily trust him to make big decisions. These are just some of the issues making fans question his leadership abilities now and going forward.
I think Perrin could be a good AD, so just make him the permanent one! I honestly don’t have a list of people whom I would want as the AD, but I just want one for the long-term. Until it happens, the stability needed for an already fragile program will be non-existent.
A Decent Recruiting Class
Tom Herman may have a roster full of experienced players, but he doesn’t have a leg up on recruiting for 2017 just yet. He’s already making some waves around the state of Texas, but has to play catch-up with a lot of the big-name recruits since he’s coming in so late in the game.
I don’t need to see a top-10 or top-15 recruiting class when it’s all said and done. In fact, that may not even be possible due to the limited amount of scholarships Herman has to offer. A class of 20-21 players is about all we can expect when the first Wednesday in February rolls around for national signing day. As long as Herman lands the players needed most, then we can’t ask for much more this year.
Shane Buechele put on a display last year that we haven’t in Austin since the Colt McCoy era. He put up some impressive numbers and showed a lot of poise as a freshman, but he may actually not be the best fit in Herman’s offense. He has the experience factor going for him to help his case to be the starter going forward, though.
Sam Ehlinger is enrolling in January, just like Buechele did last year, so don’t count him out. Ehlinger probably needs to redshirt, in my opinion, so I think Herman will have to look at other options for depth.
Does that mean Jerrod Heard moves back to quarterback? Or does Herman go the JUCO route or pursue a graduate transfer to compete for the job?
It’s possible the Longhorns quarterback for 2017 isn’t even on campus yet. For me, it’s not a matter of who is behind center. As long as it’s clear that he is THE guy, then we won’t have to deal with yet another offseason full of drama regarding the quarterback position.
Stability Within the Program
Considering how smooth the transition went from firing Charlie Strong to hiring Tom Herman, it appears stability may be on the way. Of course, a permanent Athletic Director would put a stamp on it, but there have been larger issues than just that.
It seems like everyone from the fans, regents, boosters and even the student athletes are on the same page with bringing Herman on board. There isn’t any animosity toward him right now, and he can basically ask for anything he wants and he will get it.
Let’s just avoid some media embarrassments causing national reporters to refer to our program as a “cesspool”, how about it?
More Than Just a Few Wins
Winning cures everything. Losing magnifies even the tiniest issues. Herman doesn’t have to win the conference championship in his first year. Getting to a bowl game would already be an improvement, but the standard has to be set higher.
If all of the other points I made from my wish list come true, then I think the wins will come more naturally. On the other hand, winning games will make my points not seem like a big deal at all.
I believe most Texas fans would agree with this list, but what else would YOU want from the program for Christmas and in 2017?
E-mail Chase at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @chaseholik88.
Photo: Randall Chancellor, Flickr