Charlie Strong’s Texas-wide bus tour started in Fort Worth on Monday and the first-year coach didn’t mince words.
He didn’t wow the crowd with inspriational prose or make empty promises, he told the truth, which was probably a little difficult for some Longhorn fans to hear.
“We have everything available, and I don’t know why we can’t be successful,” Strong said. “There’s no reason for us not to be. Now, I can’t tell you how soon it’s going to be. Don’t hold me to that. Don’t say, ‘Ooh, coach said next year we’ll be in the national…’ We will not be in the national championship game.”
This is what happens when Texas’ new coach stops being polite and starts getting real, welcome to the Real World Austin starring Charlie Strong.
He’s not trying to crush the hopes and dreams of Longhorn fans across the state, he’s just trying to tell it like it is.
Trust that he watched the same spring game all the rest of Texas’ fans did last season and realized that his Longhorns have a long way to go before they get back to the glory years.
And that’s OK.
Anyone who thought Strong was going to come in and work a Year One miracle was delusional. Texas is a good team, has the potential to be a great team, but with its quarterback play still in flux, it’s going to take some time to get there. Let’s all remember that Strong’s greatest successes — as an assistant or as a head coach — have come because of a star quarterback, and Texas just doesn’t have that right now.
Strong also told the group of Longhorns fans that his team needed to be humbled a bit.
“A lot of our guys, they feel entitled and they get a little complacent because of where we are,” Strong told the crowd. “So then as a coaching staff, that’s what we have to be so conscious of when the guys feel they are a little better than what they are. It’s all about building their confidence, and I tell them each and every day. You are a good football player. Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re not.”
There are still four months until fall camp starts, but expect Strong to stick to his story and try to keep high expectations in a more reasonable place. If the Longhorns can get consistency and health from its quarterback, they could very well win 10 games next season and that, despite the lack of national championship, would be a huge success.
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