Texas Football: Breaking: Todd Orlando Fired by The University of Texas

Chris Dukes

The University of Texas has confirmed it has parted ways with defensive coordinator Todd Orlando. 

In an emailed statement from Tom Herman and the athletics department, the university confirmed several staff changes. 

Three assistant coaches who have been with the staff since Herman took over at Texas for the 2017 season have been relieved of their duties. Those coaches are defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Todd Orlando, pass game coordinator/outside receivers coach Drew Mehringer and inside receivers coach Corby Meekins. Orlando and Mehringer will no longer be with the staff, while Meekins will no longer serve as an assistant coach, but will continue on for the immediate future in an administrative capacity.

“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.”

Orlando is a former Broyles Award finalist, but the Longhorns struggled on the defensive side of the ball for large portions of 2019 finishing No. 108 in total defense and No. 127 in passing yards allowed. Only four FBS teams finished worse against the pass this regular season. 

Orlando has been on Herman's staff since 2015 when he was hired to join the Houston staff. 

Before that, the 48-year-old Pittsburgh native worked at Utah State, Florida International and Connecticut. 

Craig Naivar will take over play-calling and defensive coaching duties through the bowl game. Naivar was the co-defensive coordinator with Orlando in Houston from 2015-16 and again this past season after serving as Texas' special teams' coordinator from 2017-18.

Texas head coach Tom Herman said the program would be in "heavy evaluation mode" after the Longhorns' season finale against Texas Tech and didn't rule out the possibility of staff changes in his postgame press conference after Texas' 24-10 loss to Baylor. 

"I'm not gonna comment about anything like that until after the season," Herman said. 

Should Texas make a move like this it would likely come directly after the season, allowing other members of the staff to get on the recruiting trail and try and stem any potential commitments.