Despite repeatedly stating that he would not quit, resign, or retire, Texas Longhorns baseball coach Augie Garrido did exactly that on Memorial Day, as the school announced that he relinquished his duties as the head coach and will remain at Texas as a special assistant to athletic director Mike Perrin.
It was the soft landing that Garrido deserves and was always going to receive as Perrin and president Greg Fenves moved quickly to remove Garrido after a season that ended on Saturday tied for the most losses in school history.
"I owe everyone at The University of Texas a million heartfelt thank you's," said Garrido in a statement released by the school. "I came here to serve and I am so proud to be able to continue to serve The University in my new role as Special Assistant to Mike Perrin."
Garrido had one year remaining on a contract that paid him $1.04 million annually and had a $300,000 buyout, most or all of which the school will surely pay.
"Augie and I met today and had a very good talk," Perrin said. "I asked him to serve as my special assistant and he has graciously accepted. We both care deeply for The University of Texas and our baseball program. I am beyond appreciative of all that Augie has done for Texas baseball and want to celebrate those successes. I'm happy he'll be continuing to work with me as a special assistant and looking forward to working with him in that role."
So Garrido ultimately made the only move that was available to him and did so without digging in too much or turning the end of his tenure at Texas into a circus.
The decision ends a head coaching career that spanned 48 years, 33 College World Series appearances16 NCAA Regional titles, 25 conference championships, six coach of the year awards, and five national titles.
He joined the Texas program in 1996, becoming only the fourth head coach in program history, and in his fourth season he took the 'Horns to the College World Series, then won the title in 2002 and 2005, in addition to finishing as the runners up in 2004 and 2009. In 2003 and 2014, the Longhorns finished third. Texas won at least 50 games six times in Garrido's 20 years, topped by 58 wins in 2004, helping him finish his Longhorn career with a record of 824-427-2 (.658).
All in all, Garrido's accomplishments are unmatched in the sport:
College baseball's all-time wins leader (1,975 wins) boasts a significant list of career accomplishments. He is the first baseball coach to lead two different schools to national titles (Cal State Fullerton and Texas) and is one of only four coaches in the modern era of NCAA baseball, football and men's or women's basketball to do so (Nick Saban, Rick Pitino and Urban Meyer). Garrido guided squads to National Championships in four different decades, and is one of only three coaches in history to win five or more NCAA titles (1979, 1984, 1995, 2002, 2005).
"Augie has long been among the best coaches in college athletics, an exceptional developer of young men, great leader and tremendous representative of our University," Perrin added. "I have deep appreciation, admiration and gratitude for all that he has accomplished in his 20 years leading our baseball program. From the two National Championships he brought to Texas, to the many thrilling College World Series performances, Big 12 titles and becoming the all-time winningest coach in college baseball history, he has a vast list of success stories, but none greater than the positive impact he has made on the countless numbers of student-athletes he has coached. We are so grateful for all he has given and everything he's done for Longhorn baseball, Texas athletics and our great university.
"Augie has left an indelible mark on Texas Athletics and will forever be remembered as a true icon of college baseball, much like the legendary Longhorn coaches of the past 100-plus years - Billy Disch, Bibb Falk and Cliff Gustafson. He's a man who for two decades shared with Texas his gift for building championship teams, enhancing student-athletes' lives both on and off the field and winning with style, class and grace. He is a Hall of Famer in the game of baseball, a great man and a true Longhorn legend."
Thanks for all the great memories, coach. Hook 'em!