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After three seasons, Texas assistant coach Herb Hand says farewell to the Longhorns

Texas assistant coach Herb Hand smiles after offensive lineman Samuel Cosmi (52) scored a touchdown on Oct. 5, 2019, in Morgantown, W. Va. [NICK WAGNER/AMERICAN-STATESMAN]

After coaching UT's offensive linemen for the past three seasons, Herb Hand is moving on.

Hand took to Twitter on Monday to announce that he won't be a part of new Texas coach Steve Sarkisian's staff in 2021. Hand had one year remaining on his contract. During the 2020 season, Hand was billed as an offensive line coach and co-offensive coordinator.

"From the Hand family to the men who we have been honored to work with in Austin...Thank y’all," Hand tweeted. "We love you and are so appreciative for all you gave to our UNIT, the team and The University of Texas. You ALL have greatness in your future...proud to count you among “my guys".

When the NCAA allowed its football programs to add a 10th assistant following the 2017 season, Hand was the addition to UT's coaching staff. After coming over from Auburn, Hand solidified an offensive line that mainly used a combination of six players during a 2018 season that ended with a win in the Sugar Bowl.

Over the past two seasons, two of Hand's pupils — Zach Shackelford and Samuel Cosmi — earned all-conference honors. This spring, Cosmi could become the first Longhorn lineman selected in the first round of the NFL draft since Mike Williams was the fourth overall pick in 2002.

Hand, however, struck out several times when it came to recruiting offensive linemen in the 2021 recruiting cycle. The Longhorns did sign two three-star talents in Hayden Conner and Max Merril, but it missed out on several blue-chip prospects in what was considered a deep class for offensive linemen.

At his introductory press conference on Saturday, Sarkisian was asked if he would retain any of the coaches who worked under Tom Herman. When Herman was hired after the 2016 season, all of Charlie Strong's assistants were shown the door. Sarkisian didn't make any promises but said he would hold individual meetings with the remaining staff members.

"Putting together a staff is like putting together a jigsaw puzzle," Sarkisian said. "It's (about) the right pieces."

Putting together a coaching staff is one of the first items on the checklist for Sarkisian, who through Jan. 11 is also still working as the offensive coordinator at Alabama. The regular signing period opens on Feb. 3.