LSU Tigers head coach Paul Mainieri seems to have gone further in the process with Texas Longhorns administrators seeking to fill the vacant head coaching position for the baseball program than anyone had to this point, but it has had the same result as reported interest in several other big-time head coaches -- Mainieri is staying at his elite job with a nice raise.
This cannot be considered a surprise on any level. Mainieri has Louisiana roots, has eight of his nine starting hitters returning next year from a young and overachieving 2016 team, and LSU is the one job that is probably structurally a better baseball job than Texas. This is the school that wins the attendance competition by over 2,000 per game on a yearly basis, after all.
If nothing else, the first Texas coaching search in two decades has succeeded in significantly raising the market salary for top-tier college baseball coaches. It's a nice sign for the game as a whole that other schools are showing a real willingness to invest in the baseball by shelling out to keep their successful coaches.
That big-picture positive is no comfort for Mike Perrin and Texas, however. The name that seems to consistently be popping up at this point is John Savage of UCLA, about whom this writer would be...unexcited. Of course I would love to be proven wrong, but it wouldn't be the type of hire I was hoping for largely because it would be a continuation of what I believe to have been a recruiting-killing offensive philosophy.
But, the man has had real success at UCLA and there's a good chance I'll end up looking foolish for not loving the hire, if indeed that's the direction Texas goes. On the other hand, nothing is certain yet. On one end of the spectrum, maybe one of the CWS coaches is still in play and that's why Texas hasn't made a move yet. One can still hold out hope for Jim Schlossnagle to come to Austin, right?
On the other end of the spectrum, high school coach and former Rice Owl Lance Berkman apparently wants the job. What could go wrong?