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Texas Football fires Tom Herman, names Steve Sarkisian as new head coach

The University of Texas has named Steve Sarkisian as the new head coach of the Longhorns football team. (Photo: Texas Longhorns, Twitter)
The University of Texas has named Steve Sarkisian as the new head coach of the Longhorns football team. (Photo: Texas Longhorns, Twitter)
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The University of Texas has named Steve Sarkisian as the new head coach of the Longhorns football team.

The current offensive coordinator for the University of Alabama will replace Tom Herman, who was released from his position on Saturday morning after four years as head coach.

In a statement sent out on Saturday, the university said:

With our football season coming to a close, our vice president and athletics director, Chris Del Conte, has evaluated the UT program’s strengths and weaknesses and where the program is relative to our goals. While we have made measured progress during the past several years under Tom Herman’s leadership, Chris has recommended to the university president, Jay Hartzell, that UT make a coaching change to get us on track to achieving our ambitious goals. President Hartzell and the chair of our Board of Regents, Kevin Eltife, concur with this recommendation and have approved the change. We thank Coach Herman for his service and dedication to our student-athletes, our program and our university.

This comes just three weeks after the final game of the Longhorns regular football schedule, closing with an overall record of 7-3 for the 2020 season.

With rumors swirling about Herman's future with the program, Athletic Director Chris Del Conte had previously released a statement saying "There has been a lot of speculation about the future of our football coach. My policy is to wait until the end of the season before evaluating and commenting on our program and coaches. With the close of the regular season, I want to reiterate that Tom Herman is our coach."

The Longhorns then went on to capture the Alamo Bowl title on Tuesday, defeating the Colorado Buffaloes 55-23.

Four days later, the program announced the dismissal of Herman.

Said Del Conte on Saturday:

Decisions like this are very, very difficult and certainly not something I take lightly. As I've said before, my philosophy is to wait until the end of the season to look at all of the factors in evaluating any of our programs. After much deliberation and a great deal of thought, as I've looked back at the totality of where our football program is and in discussing its future, it became apparent that it was in the best interest of the University of Texas to move in a different direction. I'm grateful for all that Coach Herman has done and the hard work and dedication he and his staff have put in on behalf of our program and student-athletes. I thank him for all of his efforts and his service to our institution, and I wish him the best in the future.

An email sent to ticket holders concluded with a final statement from Del Conte: "We realize this is a challenging time for everyone and appreciate your continued dedication, support, patience and understanding. Though we’re disappointed it didn’t work out with Coach Herman, we know there are brighter days ahead and look forward to them."

Tom Herman was named the 30th Head Football Coach at The University of Texas in 2016.

In a quick turnaround, Saturday afternoon the announcement was made that Steve Sarkisian would serve as the new head coach for the Longhorns in place of Herman.

The program quickly took to social media to welcome "Coach Sark" aboard.

In a statement released by the university, UT President Jay Hartzell said: "Hiring Steve Sarkisian represents a critical investment in our football program's future, not just for our student-athletes, but for all of Longhorn Nation. Our entire community benefits from a healthy and successful athletics program, and naming Steve as our coach infuses our football program with the necessary guidance and expertise to drive further success."

Sarkisian joined as the offensive coordinator for the Crimson Tide in 2019 after spending two years with the Atlanta Falcons. His head coaching record is 46-35 overall and 2-2 in bowl games.

Said Sarkisian on the new role:

On Jan. 4, 2006, I was the USC quarterback coach when we played Texas in that famed national championship game. There has always been something special about Longhorn football, its history and traditions – not just on that day – and I could never have imagined that 15 years later, I would join the Longhorns as their head coach," Sarkisian commented. "This is a unique and compelling opportunity to lead this storied program to the next level, competing once again amongst the best in college football.
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UT Athletics Director Chris Del Conte also chimed in with his support:

Steve Sarkisian is one of the top offensive minds in the game of football, which he has proved over and over during his time with USC, Atlanta, and most recently, Alabama. We are confident our players and coaches will thrive under his leadership and in response to his energy and passion for the game.

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