After another devastating loss, Texas Longhorns head coach Charlie Strong finally made a resounding decision about the defense, as Orangebloods reported on Sunday evening that Strong “will take over full control and play-calling duties” moving forward.
Horns247 confirmed the news shortly thereafter and Strong himself said that it was a move that “needed to be made” during his Monday morning media availability. Bedford will remain on staff coaching the secondary, leaving questions as to the roll of first-year defensive backs coach Clay Jennings.
Strong admitted after the 49-31 loss to the Oklahoma State Cowboys on Saturday that he made “a few” defensive calls in Stillwater.
Following the road defeat to the California Golden Bears in the previous game, Strong promised to evaluate every coach in an effort to fix the defense. Despite some buzz behind the scenes that the Texas head coach would remove or reassign Bedford, he declined to make any public, significant changes in responsibilities.
Unfortunately, the focus on tackling fundamentals and early personnel changes during the bye week resulted in numerous missed tackles in the first half in Stillwater, 21 in total.
And so in the immediate aftermath of a crushing loss that further endangered Strong’s continued employment by Texas, he decided that more substantive changes are necessary.
Strong and Bedford have worked together since joining the Florida staff in 2008, but with Strong’s own job on the line, it appears that he’s willing to sacrifice his longtime colleague in an effort to fulfill his promise to fix the defense.
Perhaps the most concerning aspect of Strong’s apparent decision is the fact that this will be the third time in six years, and the second consecutive season, that the Texas head coach has made a change to his offensive of defensive play caller.
Having to do so repeatedly suggests that Strong struggles to make needed offseason decisions and instead puts off those crucial changes to the point at which the status quo becomes absolutely and totally untenable.
Such a mistake is understandable the first time, a significant warning sign the second time, and rather unacceptable the third time.