Confirming reports late Sunday night that Charlie Strong would take over the defense from coordinator Vance Bedford, Texas Longhorn head coach Strong sounded resolute at his news conference Monday morning, vowing to fix the problems on the defensive side of the ball.
“We have not played well the past two weeks. It is unacceptable.”
Bedford will now concentrate on coaching the secondary along with defensive backs coach Clay Jennings.
“It’s a move that needed to be made,” said Strong about the change in duties. “Sometimes players just need to hear another voice.”
Strong said Bedford handled the demotion as a “professional”, and was looking to do what was best for the team in order to get back to winning. He said Bedford saw it coming himself, and was on board with the decision.
Strong did not label the move a “desperate” move. He said the team is very young but did not want to use the youth or inexperience as an excuse.
“We have talent. We just need to get our confidence back and make plays.”
Strong compared this year’s defense to the defense he had in Florida as defensive coordinator in 2007.
“We were young and couldn’t stop anyone,” coach Strong said.
The ’07 defense allowed almost 25 points per game in ’07, but Florida made significant improvement the following year and won the national championship with the defense giving up a mere 12 points per game. Texas fans can only hope for some of that Florida sunshine in Austin.
In other news from the press conference, Strong said freshman safety Brandon Jones would continue to see playing time due to his play making potential. He also stated that running back D’Onta Foreman would be back on practice field later this week after an oblique injury took him out of last week’s game.
The outlook was not as good for fellow running back Chris Warren III. Strong ruled him out for the Upcoming Oklahoma Game after he sustained a knee injury against Oklahoma State. There are rumors that Warren will miss rest of the season, but Strong said Warren was still being evaluated.