Texas will hire Tom Herman of Houston as its football coach, as first reported by ESPN and confirmed by multiple other news outlets. The news came shortly after the Longhorns officially parted ways with coach Charlie Strong after three seasons.
Herman, who led Houston to a 22-4 record in two seasons, proved a hot commodity this week. Not only was the 41-year-old courted by Texas, but he was also reportedly wooed by LSU. According to the LSU beat writer for the Advocate (Baton Rouge), the Tigers tried to nail down Herman on Friday but failed to close the deal. The Tigers, according to the Advocate, then opted to give interim coach Ed Orgeron the job on a permanent basis.
The terms of Herman’s deal with Texas have not been reported, although LSU was reportedly willing to double Herman’s $3 million annual salary with Houston, according to people who spoke to USA Today’s Glenn Guilbeau on Friday.
With an official announcement of Herman’s hiring expected later Saturday, Texas will seek a quick turnaround. The Longhorns went 16-21 under Strong, with three consecutive losing seasons for the first time since 1936-38. The final straw was a 24-21 defeat to Kansas last Saturday, the Jayhawks’ first Big 12 victory in more than two years and their first over Texas since 1938.
“Charlie Strong is an outstanding leader and role model who worked hard and with great integrity to move Longhorn football in the right direction,” Texas President Gregory L. Fenves said in a statement on Saturday. “In the end, the results over three seasons were not there. It was not clear the future was going to be at the levels expected of Longhorn football.”
Strong, meanwhile, who called Saturday “a difficult day,” said in a statement, “I do understand that it comes down to wins and losses, and we have not done our job in that area yet.”
He added: “I accept full responsibility for that, but know in my heart that we accomplished our primary goal, which is the development of young men.”