We're about t-minus 3 minutes from Charlie Strong presumably announcing he's stepping down/fired in Austin and with that thump the rest of the dominoes will start wobbling.
Here's a synopsis of where we stand in terms of coaching gigs in the State:
The names for the Baylor job are a wide ranging coaching buffet. From Tom Herman (not likely), to Chad Morris (Likely), to Les Miles (Crazy), to P.J. Fleck (Whatever). Miles is the new Houston Nutt, he'll be mentioned for every job but with LSU's talent over the last few years, why wasn't he able to win, you know, bigger? And will he adapt to the way the game is played?
We've been reading that Morris is likely the guy here. Apparently SMU is already getting a list together.
We're listing Texas as open, call us crazy but it'll be true in a few minutes. The name they want is of course Tom Herman. From all reports he wants them. He'll make a ton of money and hold one of the top 3 jobs in the Country with the most talented young roster in the conference.
Herman leaves a juggernaut in place at Houston in a great recruiting location with a decent fan base. Questions continue about whether the Cougars, with no Power 5 slot, can continue to spend money at the level they're currently at. Does Houston promote from within? Todd Orlando or Major Applewhite? We're about to find out.
Assuming Morris leaves, and it's a decent assumption, where does SMU go? Do they promote from within, either Van Malone or longer shot former DeSoto head coach Claude Mathis. Malone's defense has sort of overachieved this year and Mathis knows the high school ranks in Dallas and East Texas better than anyone. Maybe SMU looks outside, but they're moving in a good direction so you'd hate to fall back at all.
Yes, Kliff has a big buyout, yes, he's an alum, yes, he's well liked, yes, he's the merchant of cool, but things need to change in Lubbock. This is his 3rd defensive coordinator in his tenure and they paid a lot for David Gibbs, and it hasn't panned out. Plus when you lose 66-10 to Iowa State and your program isn't progressing the native will get restless.
Sean Kugler's fourth year has evidenced little to no progress. From an encouraging 2014 to five wins last season to no more than four this season, UTEP is trending the wrong way. The good news is, he's cheap. The bad news is he's cheap. Either UTEP understands they'll have to pay at least $200,000 to $300,000 more for the next guy and decides to stick with Kugler, or they decide to swallow the buyout. It cuts both ways.
We think Bailiff gets another year at West U. The Owls have ticked up to finish 2016 and with the injuries that have struck Rice, he should get a reprieve. Plus Bailiff has taken the Owls to unprecedented modern era heights and he's recruiting well.