Texas Football: Potential OC Candidate Graham Harrell Seems to Have Plenty of Options on His Plate

Chris Dukes

USC offensive coordinator Graham Harrell's name started popping up on Texas fans' radar literally minutes after the news came down that UT offensive coordinator Tim Beck had been reassigned. 

The association came with good reason. Harrell is thought of highly in most if not all coaching circles. 

He's coached under the likes of Mike Leach, Mike Gundy and Seth Littrell. He's got skins on the wall at a major program - his offense was in the top five in passing yards in his first season at USC. 

His scheme is fun and player-friendly. Perhaps, more importantly, it's quarterback-friendly. 

At the time Harrell sat on shaky ground at USC with head coach Clay Helton's future still up in the air. Add to that Harrell's Texas ties (he played high school football at Ennis High School and college ball at Texas Tech), ties to current members of the staff (his father coached with current UT analyst Bob Shipley in Brownwood) and the fact is wife is also a Texas native and you start to see why it would all add up for the young offensive prodigy to lending his services to the Forty Acres. 

However, since just Sunday the line forming for Harrell's services seems to be growing. First, USC staved off speculation about head coach Clay Helton, issuing a vote of confidence in Harrell's current boss and shoring up his employment status for at least another year. 

While Texas could still intice Harrell to leave his station in Los Angeles with better money and geography, some programs may now be offering him more than Texas can top. 

UNLV reportedly interviewed Harrell for their head coaching vacancy and reports have surfaced that UTSA has also talked with the former Mike Leach disciple about a head coaching job. 

Even with his current job still being open and two potential head coaching spots on the table, Harrell could still very well end up at Texas if the Longhorns if there is indeed enough mutual interest. Herman's selling point could be that better programs will come calling if he can succeed on the Forty Acres and the Texas athletics budget could very well come up with a better salary for their offensive coordinator than he would earn as a head coach at a group of five school.   

So is Harrell willing to put being a head coach on the back burner for a year or two? Will Texas pull out all the stops to bring him to the Forty Acres? 

If reports are true, head coach Tom Herman wants this process to be quick and decisive so we may not have to wait all that long to find out.