Whether Charlie Strong is keeping Longhorn fans’ expectations low, or keeping expectations realistic can be debated. Nonetheless, the new Texas head coach told a crowd of Longhorn fans that Texas will not be playing for a national title in January of 2015.
“We have everything available, and I don’t know why we can’t be successful,” Strong told fans in Fort Worth during the first stop on his bus tour, per to the Austin American-Statesman. “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.”
Perhaps one can chalk this up to pessimism following an inconsistent performance at the quarterback position during Texas’ annual spring game, but it’s also about deflating the big head Texas players are so often criticized for getting.
“A lot of our guys, they feel entitled and they get a little complacent because of where we are,” Strong said. “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.”
But don’t take this the wrong way, Strong has the best interest of the Longhorns in mind and hopes to bring the Longhorns back to national prominence.
“He’s not going to go around kissing babies,” former UT coach David McWilliams said. “And that’s good. I know when coach (Darrell) Royal came in, all those guys after the first meeting said, ‘Things are going to change around here.’ And you’re seeing the same thing.”