Mack Brown met with the media this morning for an Alamo Bowl press conference, along with Oregon coach Mark Helfrich. It’s been the first time he’s answered questions directly since the moments following Texas’ 30-10 loss to Baylor last Saturday.
Our own Brian Davis is there, and will blog on what he’s seeing and hearing. But these were Mack’s comments regarding his future, which started with his own statement:
“My situation has not changed.
“I’ve got the best president in the country in Bill Powers. He’s unbelievable. He’s done a tremendous job for eight years. What we did lose is an iconic athletic director in DeLoss Dodds, who’s been here 32 years and has run the best program in the country without question and he’d been my boss for 16 years.
“So we’ve hired what I think is a great athletic director in Steve Patterson. I got to visit with him a little bit in New York the other day, but I haven’t had time to sit down and visit with him. Anytime your athletic director changes, that changes the game. So with all due respect to him, I want to sit down with he and Bill in the near future and talk about where we’re going and where our program’s going.
“I’m excited about our team and the way they fought back this year. They had more adversity than any team I’ve ever seen. We weren’t excited to be 8-4, but we were excited about the way they played. They fought and they competed and it was a great message for all of us.
“So, moving forward, I’m looking forward to my meeting with Bill and with Steve and we’ll all get on the same page and move forward. But again, I want the focus to be on these kids and the focus to be on this bowl game because that’s what we’re here for.”
Question: Mack, we’ve talked about distractions all year. This season’s been nothing but. When you do get to talk with your team, what can you tell them to get everybody’s mind right?
“Beat Oregon. That’s the only thing that’s important.
“This is about the kids. This isn’t about me. It’s about the kids moving forward. And that’s what we are. Our guys that try to keep the staff moving in the right direction, keep all the distractions away from that. It’s about the University of Texas playing against Oregon. It’s about the kids in this game. It’s about this game.
“We sure don’t want that to be a distraction. I haven’t seen our kids since the Baylor game. I’ll leave here like Mark. It’s a tough day for both of us because we’re both recruiting and the dead period starts on Sunday, so we’ve got to get enough done today as we can.
“And then we’ll have our banquet on Friday night, and I look forward to seeing the kids ’cause I know they were down after the Baylor game, and then we’ll have our first bowl practice on Saturday and get started toward the ball game.”
Question: Do you believe this is your last game as the head coach of UT, and, if so, what does it mean to you?
“You know, I’m excited about the game. I said we wouldn’t talk about me or my future because I am going to have that meeting with Bill and with Steve Patterson. I look forward to that meeting, but we’re not going to discuss that anymore today. We’re just going to talk about the ball game.”
Question: Coach Brown, with losing the game to Baylor and the Big 12 championship, how do you expect the players to respond to that plus the added distractions of everything else going on right now.
“I’m not worried about the other stuff, but you always worry when you lose your last game and it meant so much. You worry about creating an edge for your next game and your bowl game. And to me, the team that has the best edge in the bowl game is the one that usually wins ’cause there’s more upsets in bowl games than at any other time in our seasons.”
The rest of the press conference was all Alamo Bowl, all the time.
Next up in the Mack watch:
Today, UT regents will meet to discuss school president Bill Powers’ future.
As Mack said this morning, he will meet with Powers and Patterson soon. Some reports are saying that will happen today.
Mack is expected to spend the rest of today recruiting, within the state. He was recruiting in Florida on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Friday night is Texas’ annual football banquet.
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