First Steve Addazio, now Jeff Grimes. Throw Bob Bostad in there and it looks like Mack Brown has missed on his top three targets for the last remaining coaching position on the Texas staff -- offensive line coach.
After leaving Austin Thursday night with a job offer from the 'Horns, Grimes spent until Sunday morning deciding on his fate, when Auburn finally ended the suspense by issuing a press release that he had decided to spurn the opportunity to return to the state where he was born, went to college, and worked as a graduate assistant.
Grimes had this to say about his decision in the press release:
The University of Texas has a great football program and I have a tremendous amount of respect for Mack Brown. As a Texas native, the position was very enticing, however, I have decided to remain at Auburn. My family and I love being a part of the Auburn family, the Auburn community and this football program. It is a very special place to us, and I'm excited to help Coach Chizik continue to build upon the success that we've already achieved in our first two seasons.
So the search continues on. OSU OL coach Joe Wickline is widely considered the next top candidate, but the word out of Stillwater in the last few days has not been as positive as it was a week or so ago. On Friday evening, Wickline denied having any formal contact with Texas. Chris Klenakis of Arkansas and Chris Strausser of Boise State are two other names in circulation.
The decision by Grimes also has recruiting ramifications, as Christian Westerman and his family will visit Austin on Friday and Auburn could turn into the prohibitive favorite if Texas doesn't have a coach in place at that time and may now be the favorite anyway. If the search does finally end, the new coach will have to win over Christian and his family for the Longhorns to keep their second most highly-ranked prospect in the 2011 class.