Jerry Jones Should Be Sharing Texas
by Troy Gorham
Jan 31, 2014 12:31 AM EST
"With whom," you ask? Jon Gruden. "Why," you ask? Simply put, because Gruden should have taken the job as Mack Brown's predecessor as head coach at UT. If he would have, he and Jerry Jones would be the two most powerful men in Texas. Of course not money wise, because everybody knows "Good ole' Jerry" keeps his pockets fat. But as far as football goes, in five years they would be the two most powerful influences in America's football oil spill...pun intended...Texas. Amidst the Friday night lights and Jerry's world. America's team and the school that each and every kid growing up in Texas wants to play for, the Texas Longhorns.
Think about it, think about how quick those Texas thoroughbred football players would sign to play for Jon Gruden, the modern day John Madden, in my opinion. You see him work with those kids on his Fired Football Coaches Association show, and it's a nice little inside look at things, I get it. But it's blatantly obvious the guy's born to coach, wants to coach, and could have any job he wanted at any level, and within reason, could name his price. By now, all the 17 or 18 year old kids have seen all sides of Gruden. Even though they were young, they saw him win a Super Bowl, they've seen him work with young players entering the draft, and they've seen and heard him on draft shows and of course Monday Night Football. The guy is a football wizard. I'm sure he's already forgotten more about football than most of us will ever know. He knows x's and o's, he knows schemes, he knows preparation, the guy is a football coach sitting in a booth. And it seems to me that, regardless of what he says, he's foaming at the mouth for the perfect scenario to coach again.
I think the University of Texas was that perfect scenario, and if not, he must have something in mind that he's waiting for. He's still a young guy, charismatic, likeable, a player's coach that's not afraid to get in your face and coach you hard. He's everything young football players need and should want. And at UT, he would be in a hotbed of football talent that even he's never seen, and guess what...they all want to be Longhorns. The guy wouldn't even have to recruit outside of his own state! If he did it would just be for style points. He'd get the bulk of his 5 star recruits, and yes, they would all be 5 star recruits, from Texas. Then maybe if he saw a kid or two who were off the charts from So-Cal or Florida he could go grab them too. He would literally get anything and anybody he wanted.
Five years. That's what I think it would take for him to not only turn that UT program around, but turn it into a force that college football hasn't seen in a long, long time. I'm talking since the Osbourne Huskers, the Bowden Noles, and yes, even the Saban Tide. Five years. Give Gruden five years at Texas and I think you get two championship rings, not to mention the rings he would win after they extended his contract and the turnover was complete and he had all HIS GUYS to coach. The years they didn't win it all, they would go to the big bowl games, continue to sweeten the recruiting pot, make the school more money than even those Texas millionaires could count, and probably even have a new "Mini Jerry's World" stadium built. "Gru's World," I can see it now.
Ten Years, forget about it. UT would be the dynasty by which all other football dynasties are judged. He would by then have a waiting list of 2,000 names of those 5 star recruits every year just chomping at the bit to play there. The All-America game where the players announce on television where they're going to college...."Texas"...."UT"...."I'm taking my talents to Austin." Year after year he would get the best. He would soon become the highest paid and most storied coach in college football history and would write a chapter in football history that I think would be good for the game. Think about it. The guy's too small and not good enough to live his dream in the NFL, becomes a QB coach, finally gets himself a head coaching job, gets fired because of not making it to the Super Bowl because of a rule (Tuck Rule) that has never been called before, the next year wins the Super Bowl with another team against the team that fired him, then gets fired again by the team he won the Super Bowl with! Are you kidding me?
All just to go turn a bewildered college program back into what it once was and then some. I'm telling you, it could've been beautiful. He and Jerry Jones running Texas. America's TeamS...plural, in the lone star state. But it will never be. Don't get me wrong, Texas got a good coach in Charlie Strong, and I think he'll do a good job down there. But "good" isn't ideal. And I think Gruden would have been the ideal situation for all parties involved. But there's no changing it now. Gruden will be back in the booth next year. Strong will be coaching Texas. And Jerry Jones will still be the only fat cat in Texas. Which is probably the way he'd like to keep it anyway. That's the way this football thing goes I guess, a lot of "what if's." What if Bo Jackson never tore up his hip? What if Barry Sanders hadn't retired so early? Now, what if Jon Gruden would have turned Texas football into an unstoppable football dynasty? We'll never know.