The college football coaching carousel is always tricky.
On one hand, making an exciting hire of an up-and-coming or established and successful coach is critical to both program momentum and fan engagement going forward.
On the other, it can be difficult to predict whether or not the success of a coordinator or a Group of 5 head coach will translate as a head coach at the Power 5 level.
Oftentimes, those hires do not work out, whether it is due to some unexpected bumps in the road, an issue that arises off of the field, or the coach simply not being a good fit for the culture of his new program.
For the Texas Longhorns, it has been an especially hard road, with the team now on their third new head coach, Steve Sarkisian, since the exit of Mack Brown in 2013.
According to CBS Sports college football expert Dennis Dodd, however, the Longhorns might have finally gotten this one right, with Dodd grading the Longhorns hire of Sarkisian as the second-best hire in the country, just behind Central Florida's hiring of Gus Malzahn.
In one sense, Sark seems a lot like Tom Herman four years ago-- the hottest name left on the board. Championship pedigree. Offensive guy. Texas boosters long ago took their shot at Nick Saban (and missed). Just last month, they took a run at Urban Meyer (and missed). Sarkisian is the next best thing -- college football's best play-caller fresh off a national championship. Sark has yet to win 10 games in a season or conference title as a head coach. He is being given every possible resource to do so at Texas. If not, he will come full circle and be the next Tom Herman -- in a different sense.
Until the Longhorns actually hit the field, however, it will be impossible to know whether or not things will work out for the best between Sarkisian and his new program.
However, given his recent success on the recruiting trail, and the talent he has assembled on his coaching staff, Sarkisian will have every opportunity to succeed where both Tom Herman and Charlie Strong failed.
Sarkisian will have his first opportunity to prove himself, when the Longhorns take the field against the College Football Playoff dark horse, Louisiana Ragin Cajuns, on September 4 in Austin.
Will Sarkisian succeed in Austin? Comment and join in on the discussion below.
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