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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Columns

Era of Herman ends, but another great one can begin


Sorry guys, like the reality that Donald Trump will be our next president, we must come to terms with head coach Tom Herman leaving our school for the University of Texas.

Although a surprise to some, this was probably a no-brainer for Herman. He had almost certainly reached the proverbial American Athletic Conference summit after leading our team to its first conference championship since 2006 and winning the Peach Bowl against the Florida State Seminoles last year.

Herman was candid about his feelings during his introductory press conference when asked about his former team.

“What I did yesterday to tell the University of Houston players that I was leaving was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life,” Herman said. “I’m not ashamed to admit I cried in front of them, and I cried when I left.”

The truth is, UH has always been a stepping stone for the man who was an offensive graduate assistant for Mack Brown and who also coached under Urban Meyer at Ohio State University.

Although a hard pill to swallow, Herman has chosen the prestige, notoriety and allure of UT instead of staying with the underdog and oftentimes-overlooked Cougars.

Good for him.

That’s right, at the risk of being chastised, I completely see the logic in a man choosing one of the greatest schools for college football ever over our school. Herman had to jump at the chance at the UT vacancy.

Football may be the driving force for UH now, but a team can go from the top to the bottom rather quickly, especially with a poor recruiting class and a group of kids who you have to figure out how to motivate.

If Herman chose to stay and failed to continue his success, he would likely be forgotten. For his family and his career, UT was exactly the right move.

Herman doesn’t make our team. Don’t get me wrong, I know his coaching makes our team exceptionally better, but to take him leaving as a sign of doom is to just not know how sports work. We need to move on and follow the lead of Athletic Director Hunter Yurachek.

“We will immediately turn our focus to identifying the next leader of our program,” Yuracheck said in a statement. “We are confident we will find the right individual who will support the young men who are and have committed to this program and who will also support our mission of building Champions for Life, both on and off the field.”

Many fans are sad, angry and ready to give up. Pump the brakes. Yes, it was awesome to see Herman embrace UH and Houston culture. He even got a grill made in our school’s honor and his pregame kissing ritual made us all embrace him as our fearless leader. These things made him special, but they didn’t make him irreplaceable.

The road for our next coach won’t be easy. Some fans will likely be disappointed, others happy. One certain thing, however, is that UH will not settle for mediocrity. Herman and our team have put the Cougars back on the map. The candidates applying for the position will be the same coaches that where probably looked at by UT and Louisiana State University, so don’t worry.

The most important factor in all this is our young and hungry players. Leaders like Ed Oliver and Duke Catalon are ready to put this team and this city on their backs. Let’s not treat them like they were only as good as their coach.

They deserve better than that after continuing to fight through so much adversity during the last two years.

Although Herman is now a spectacular part of history, it is time to stop reminiscing and look forward to everything we can accomplish if we can move on.

It is time to realize how good our team is and can be regardless of who is at the helm.

Opinion columnist Frank Campos is a media production senior and may be reached at [email protected]

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