After appearing to be the leader in the Texas Longhorns baseball coaching job, John Savage has announced that he will remain with the UCLA Bruins. This tweet was posted by UCLA's baseball account on Friday afternoon:
The announcement came just hours after Kendall Rogers of D1baseball.com reported that John Savage was the remaining target on Texas' list.
At this point, it’s getting beyond comical for Texas. Mike Perrin has to close the deal on John Savage at this point.— Kendall Rogers (@KendallRogersD1) June 17, 2016
The Texas job is now likely David Pierce's to lose. The Tulane coach has never advanced to a Super Regional, but he has made the NCAA tournament all five of his years as a head coach. He also has ties to the state of Texas, as he has coached at the high school level, as an assistant at Rice, and as head coach of Sam Houston State.
The baseball coaching search is far from bleak, but it does appear to not be going smoothly. Earlier today, Pat Casey of Oregon State also announced that he would not be leaving the Beavers to become a Longhorn.
If Texas cannot land David Pierce, expect a new crop of candidates from small schools to emerge. Dan Heefner of Dallas Baptist University seems like an obvious choice, but he has remained quiet besides a local news interview where he responded to a question about coaching vacancies by saying that he has a "unique program" that's an "unfinished job".
The rumors have been ramping up in the past couple of days for the Texas coaching search. Some speculation may be more reliable than others, as there's even been a false report that LSU's Paul Mainieri was offered the Texas job, which turned out to be untrue. However, there's no denying that the search is in full swing now. Look for the search to transition from being less about top candidates being eliminated, and more about finding the right fit -- even if his name carries no adjective beginning with an "S".