Brian Jones: Texas President Says He Is Still Backing Charlie Strong

Despite recent losses to Navy and SMU, Tom Herman remains the hottest head-coaching commodity in college football. While Texas and LSU are two high-profile programs that could be looking for a new voice this offseason, Brian Jones, a former Longhorn, isn’t convinced Herman will end up at either school.

“There were reports yesterday that it was pretty much a done deal (and that) Tom Herman (is) going to Texas,” Jones said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “Well, that is not true – at least partially not true. There are some big wigs, alumni – yes, they want Tom Herman. But the president of the University of Texas, (Gregory Fenves, essentially) said, ‘Hold up, wait a minute, I’m still backing Charlie Strong.’”

Texas, which started 2-0, has lost four of its last five games. The Longhorns (3-4) have allowed 45+ points in four of seven games this season and are in danger of finishing with a losing record for the third straight year.

Nevertheless, Fenves is apparently backing Strong.

“The president will ultimately win out in this battle,” Jones said. “It’s going to be president Fenvez versus these big wigs. So we’ll see how the season plays out the rest of the way. President Fenves understands this is for the long haul.”

LSU (5-2), meanwhile, is 3-0 since firing Les Miles. The Tigers have averaged 41.7 points per game under Ed Orgeron, this after averaging 21 points per game under Miles during the first month of the season.

LSU, one would think, would love to hire Herman – one of the top offensive minds in the country – especially given the program’s struggles on that side of the ball in recent years. That, however, may not be the case.

“Tom Herman may not be on the top of that list as far as LSU (goes),” Jones said. “There’s someone already on that staff they’re eye-balling: Mr. Dave Aranda, their current defensive coordinator.”

Aranda, 40, built one of the best defenses in the country at Wisconsin. Now he’s doing the same at LSU, which is allowing just 15 points per game.

“Young guy, and the defense is playing well,” Jones said. “Of course, there was a reason they brought him from Wisconsin because he had some outstanding defenses there. They’re going to have talent always there at LSU. They just want someone who can understand that, go out and recruit and not screw it up. So maybe Dave Aranda is at the top of that list more so than Tom Herman. That’s what I’m hearing.”

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