Count ESPN’s Paul Finebaum as a believer that Texas is most assuredly not back.
Finebaum roasted the Longhorns program on Wednesday during his appearance with Mike Greenberg on ESPN’s “Get Up.” After College Football Playoff insider Heather Dinich laid out some of the problems that new coach Steve Sarkisian faces, Greenberg asked Finebaum if any lofty expectations on Texas are realistic.
“They are not,” Finebaumm said. “Texas is no big deal, other than to Texas fans. This is not a relevant program anymore, Greeny.”
Finebaum reminded that Texas fired Mack Brown in 2013 and hasn’t achieved any lasting success since then; meanwhile Brown took over North Carolina and has the Tar Heels in the top 10 nationally.
“Texas can't even win its own state anymore,” Finebaum said. “Lost two of its best (recruits) to Alabama. It's pathetically behind Jimbo Fisher at Texas A&M. It's way, way behind their biggest rival up in Norman, Oklahoma. Texas is fighting for third, at best, in its own league, and I don't really see a clear path.”
He also said Sarkisian’s staggering results as offensive coordinator at Alabama last year was an illusion.
“I think Sark is a very good coach,” Finebaum said. “But let's be honest, Hembo (“Get Up” content producer Paul Hembekides) could have coached that offense last year at Alabama.
“I think (Sarkisian) is as good as anyone else. But the problem isn't Sark. The problem (is) Texas people. Nick Saban told me one time when he was considering — after he turned down Texas, he didn't want to report to 15 or 20 billionaires every day. That's the way that that program rolls.
“Saban took over at Alabama and said, ‘I’m in charge here.’ Lincoln Riley has very few people that he has to answer to in Norman. That's a problem for Sark — every other minute, somebody else is calling up and wanting a piece of him in that program. And until they clear that up, and they haven't yet, that program will be stuck in the mud.”