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Texas declined Houston’s offer to schedule games to reduce Tom Herman’s buyout

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The Cougars wanted a chance to face its departed new head coach.

NCAA Football: Louisville at Houston Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

When the Texas Longhorns bought out the contract of new head coach Tom Herman from the Houston Cougars, U of H athletic director Hunter Yurachek offered Texas athletic director Mike Perrin a deal to reduce Herman’s large buyout.

By scheduling home-and-home series in basketball and football, the ‘Horns could have reduced the $2.5 million owed to the Cougars as a result of luring Herman to Austin.

However, Perrin decided that he didn’t care for the offer and passed.

The football match up would have pitted Herman against his former offensive coordinator, Major Applewhite, who received his promotion to the head coaching position last week. And that would have made for some interesting storylines — Herman’s return to Houston, where many fans are upset about his departure, and Applewhite’s return to Austin, where he played quarterback and spent years as an assistant coach.

However, Texas already has most of its future non-conference schedule in place over the coming years and playing an early-season road game against a good opponent from a non-Power Five conference doesn’t have much upside.

And the last time the ‘Horns played the Cougars in Houston, inspections revealed that 4,150 temporary bleacher seats installed for the game were unsafe for fans. Texas had asked for extra tickets for the game and requested a change in venue following the decrease in seating capacity, but Houston refused.

Those with long memories in the Texas administration likely haven’t forgotten.

So Houston won’t have the opportunity to increase its the prestige of its football and basketball programs at the expense of Texas.