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Texas looking for new coordinators after Tom Herman overhauls staff

Texas coach Tom Herman is making substantial changes to his coaching staff after a massively disappointing 7-5 season.

Herman announced Sunday that he had fired defensive coordinator Todd Orlando and pass game coordinator/outside receivers coach Drew Mehringer. He also “removed the offensive coordinator responsibilities” from Tim Beck, who will remain in his quarterbacks coach role through Texas’ bowl game. Inside receivers coach Corby Meekings was also reassigned to an administrative role.

"After taking time, looking back and evaluating the season in its totality, I am very disappointed in our performance in a number of areas in 2019," Herman said. "7-5 will never be our standard at Texas and I take full responsibility for any and all of our shortcomings and know we need to do a better job coaching across the board. With that said, I do believe the future is very bright, have decided to make some changes to our staff as we head into bowl preparation and look to finish strong in the final weeks of fall recruiting."

With Orlando out of the picture, safeties coach Craig Naivar will serve as interim defensive coordinator for the bowl game. 

Herman will fill out his staff for the bowl game with support staff members while director of recruiting Bryan Carrington will assume one of the team’s allotted 10 full-time assistant roles in order to go on the road and help with recruiting. 

Meanwhile, the school said a national search for new offensive and defensive coordinators will begin immediately. 

"I'm truly grateful for everything Todd, Drew and Corby have done, not only for us here at Texas, but in building the program at Houston, as well," Herman said. "These were very difficult decisions and certainly not an indictment of them as coaches. I just believe we need a fresh set of eyes and infusion of new ideas and energy to help us grow across the board."

Texas head coach Tom Herman walks the sideline during an NCAA college football game against Baylor, Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019, in Waco, Texas. (Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

Make-or-break 2020 for Tom Herman?

Expectations were through the roof in Austin entering the 2019 season, especially on the heels of a Sugar Bowl victory over Georgia to cap off the 2018 campaign. Texas started the season 4-1 with its only loss coming in a highly competitive 45-38 shootout against LSU. 

But things went sideways in October, starting with a loss to rival Oklahoma. The next week, UT needed a last-second field goal to escape Kansas — perhaps in a sign of things to come. From there, Texas lost three of five down the stretch to TCU, Iowa State and Baylor. A 49-24 win over Texas Tech on Friday ensured Year 3 under Herman would at least finish with a winning record, but that was a small consolation when stacked up against the Big 12 title — and even College Football Playoff — hype that surrounded UT back in August. 

Texas ended up finishing the year ranked No. 108 nationally in total defense, allowing 446.3 yards per game. Only Kansas and Texas Tech were worse in the Big 12. The offense looked good early in the year, but underwhelmed down the stretch — especially in back-to-back losses to Iowa State and Baylor. 

Herman, now 24-15 (17-10 Big 12) in three years, will go back to the drawing board ahead of what could be a make-or-break 2020 season. The Longhorns have not won a Big 12 title since 2009.

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