New Texas coach Charlie Strong shrugged off comments made by UT benefactor Red McCombs and said, “I think once you win some football games, you’re going to change a lot of people’s attitudes.”
Speaking on the Dan Patrick Show on Wednesday morning, Strong was asked if he would reach out to McCombs to smooth things over.
McCombs called it a “kick in the face” that he was essentially shut out of the hiring process after begging officials to hire Jon Gruden, who didn’t want the job. McCombs, 86, has his name on the UT business school and the north end of the Royal-Memorial Stadium.
“Well, a lot of times, that happens and there are going to be statements made,” Strong said on the Dan Patrick Show. “But you can’t worry about that. You just move on and you have a job to do and you can’t worry about what people say or think. I’m going to get judged by what I do here.”
The firestorm started when McCombs made his statements Monday afternoon on ESPN 1250 in San Antonio.
“I think the whole thing is a bit sideways,” McCombs said of the selection process. “I don’t have any doubt that Charlie is a fine coach. I think he would make a great position coach, maybe a coordinator.
“But I don’t believe [he belongs at] what should be one of the three most powerful university programs in the world right now at UT-Austin. I don’t think it adds up.”
McCombs has not returned messages left by the American-Statesman.
Texas athletic director Steve Patterson has said the school did not intend to set a history-making precedent by hiring a minority football coach. He’s also acknowledged that he listens to “various stakeholders” who want to give their input.
“Like in any large, diverse organization there will be varying opinions,” Patterson said in response to McCombs’ comments. “The job of a senior executive is to take all of those views into account and make the best decision for the organization as a whole. And we did that in this case.”
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