With a manic 8-5 season and a 30-7 Alamo Bowl loss to Oregon now in the rearview mirror, Texas can begin to make way for its new figurehead. Names floating right now include Baylor's Art Briles, Louisville's Charlie Strong, Vanderbilt's James Franklin, and Stanford's David Shaw. It's believed Texas will have a new head coach in place by Jan. 15. Until that happens, there remain a few fates for the fans to consider.
Of all the changes that could occur under a new administration, Greg Robinson's status lies amongst the most gray space. Aging defensive coordinators usually get subject to the wholesale cleaning of a staff that occurs whenever a new coach comes in, but Patterson had a solid season, resuscitating a Longhorn defense that opened so terribly it earned coach Manny Diaz a firing, and eventually guiding it to a decent Big 12 finish. It would be strange to see Major Applewhite come back next year, though then again, it's not easy to gauge the success of a coordinator who coached much of the season without his starting quarterback.
Texas' incoming HC will have a fresh David Ash at his disposal in 2014, but he'll need to set a higher standard at quarterback if Texas is to reclaim any semblance of earlier glory. Football has changed since Mack moseyed onto the 40 Acres in 1998. Speed, spread offenses, and dynamic, versatile quarterbacks rule the day.
Replacement starter Case McCoy, an outgoing senior, flourished at times, particularly in the Red River Rivalry against Oklahoma, in which he threw two long touchdowns in what will likely go down as the game he'll tell his grandkids about. The Little Brother of Colt played the part of serviceable quarterback against down-and-out teams like Kansas, West Virginia, and TCU, but couldn't cut it when the schedule turned tough down the stretch against Oklahoma State, Baylor, and Oregon. McCoy finished the season with a 56.8 completion percentage, 11 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions.
But he's now gone, and so is Mack Brown. And Texas football will have a brand-new look in 2014.