The Associated Press has learned that a current and former Texas Regent spoke with the agent for Alabama head coach Nick Saban back in January, contact that was first reported shortly after the fact by Inside Texas, which prompted rumors that swirled for some time about the Longhorns and the Crimson Tide head coach.
Rumors that haven't exactly died down, either.
According to the report, regent Wallace Hall told the AP that he and former regent Tom Hicks, who also owned the Rangers, among other professional sports franchises, spoke with Jimmy Sexton, Saban's agent, shortly after the national championship game.
Several days later, Hicks then met with Brown to broach the topic of retiring. Current regent Steve Hicks, the brother of Tom, termed the conversation a "short one." Inside Texas has reported in the past that Brown didn't exactly respond well to the conversation and the immediate implications for his job. Or the fact that representatives of Texas were reaching out to the representatives of other coaches while he still had a job. No one would have, really.
From the Associated Press report, it's not clear who pushed Hall to contact Sexton.
And why would all this come out? Well, it turns out that Hall was one of the regents going after Texas president Bill Powers, who has, of course, long been a supporter of both Brown and athletic director DeLoss Dodds and is currently undergoing an impeachment investigation in the House of Representatives. On the other side of the fight? Steve Hicks, who has stood in the corner of Powers and attempted to protect the university from the machinations of Hall and Rick Perry in their attempts to turn Texas into a diploma mill.
To top it all off, Joe Jamail, who represents Brown, has threatened to sue anyone who would try to force Brown to resign.
So, what does this mean about the possibility of Saban coming to Texas? Pretty much nothing, except that a sports agent is willing to talk to other potential suitors to increase leverage for his client. Basically nothing, then.
And, yeah, Mack Brown probably isn't too happy about news of him being undermined as the head coach coming out just because he somehow got caught in the middle of this political mudslinging.