The head coaching hires for multiple athletic programs for the University of Texas made by athletic director Chris del Conte of late are very impressive. CDC was very busy within the last calendar year making head coaching changes, including Steve Sarkisian as head football coach and Vic Schaefer and head women’s basketball coach. The latest one arrived on April 1, with CDC hiring the former Texas Tech Red Raiders head coach Chris Beard to be the next skipper with the Texas basketball program.
The manner in which CDC was able to get Beard to become the next Longhorns men’s hoops head coach was truly impressive, though. According to a report from Kirk Bohls of the Austin American-Statesman on Twitter on April 2, CDC and Beard “hammered out a deal” on April 1 in a hotel room while they had a McDonald’s meal.
CDC reportedly had an Egg McMuffin and coffee from McDonald’s, while Beard had an iced tea. That really is something else for the Longhorns to get such a big and meaningful hire done.
McDonald’s getting the Chris Beard deal done for Texas basketball
The manner in which CDC got the hire done for the Longhorns to make the fifth-year former Texas Tech head coach Beard take on the same job on the Forty Acres could permanently change the trajectory of this program. Texas looked like it was headed in the right direction under now former sixth-year head coach Shaka Smart in the season that was.
But despite a mostly successful regular season and a Big 12 Tournament crown for the first time in program history, Smart and the Longhorns still entered the offseason on another disappointing note. Before CDC could come out with a ruling on Smart this offseason as to his job status, the Wisconsin native took the head coaching job with the Marquette Golden Eagles back on March 26.
Then, Texas wound up hiring Beard as Smart’s replacement for a contract that is worth around $35 million over the course of seven years. There are incentives that could dramatically boost the dollar amount that Beard will get with the Longhorns.
Beard will be looking to take the Longhorns to new heights both in terms of success in the Big 12, on a consistent basis at least, and in the postseason. Smart had a postseason record of 0-3 during his six seasons as the Texas head coach. Meanwhile, Beard took the Red Raiders to the National Championship Game in 2019, before falling short in agonizing fashion in overtime to the Virginia Cavaliers.
Texas finished up with a record of 19-8 (11-6 Big 12) last season under Smart’s direction. But it was an upset loss in the Round of 64 by just a one-point margin back on March 20 at the hands of head coach Joe Golding and the Abilene Christian Wildcats that ended the Longhorns season early.