Shawn Watson joins Texas Longhorns staff, OC still unnamed

Tom Pennington

It does not appear as if Watson will call plays at this time.

At the first team meeting for Charlie Strong as the head football coach for the Texas Longhorns on Sunday evening, former Louisville offensive coordinator Shawn Watson was introduced to the team, but it is still unclear who will take over offensive coordinator duties on Strong's first staff.

For now, call Watson the quarterbacks coach as Strong continues to vet other candidates, a list that Kirk Bohls of the Austin American-Statesman says also includes Florida wide receivers coach Joker Phillips and Bears wide receivers coach Mike Groh. Notice any similarities there?

Both other candidates are currently coaching wide receivers, one of the two positions on the offensive staff yet to be filled, assuming that Bruce Chambers will remain on in a capacity other than coaching tight ends.

Based on the modus operandi for Charlie Strong with the rest of the outgoing Texas staff, it does not appear likely that co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach Darrell Wyatt will have a chance to stick around Austin.

So the current state of affairs suggests that Watson could add a co-coordinator title along with the new wide receivers coach, though in the past Texas has had the offensive coordinator work with the quarterbacks, from Greg Davis to Bryan Harsin to Major Applewhite.

Phillips was the replacement for Rich Brooks at Kentucky after playing wide receiver for the Wildcats in college. A successful offensive coordinator in Lexington, helping lead several prolific offenses to wins in bowl games, a rarity at Kentucky, Philips went 13-24 as head coach and was terminated after the 2012 season, resulting in his move to Florida.

After playing quarterback for Virginia, Groh got his first coaching job on his father's staff with the New York Jets before returning to Virginia for eight years, the last three of which as offensive coordinator. After being let go there, he landed with Alabama as a graduate assistant and then coached quarterbacks for Charlie Strong at Louisville for a season.

After heading back to Alabama for two years to work with the wide receivers there, Groh joined the Chicago staff in 2013. As a result of those ties to the Crimson Tide, he was mentioned as a candidate to replace Doug Nussmeier before Lane Kiffin got the job.

Former Texas wide receiver Kyle Shanahan was also mentioned as a possible candidate for the Texas offensive coordinator position and would make sense as a wide receivers coach and co-offensive coordinator play caller given his NFL pedigree.

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