By Shaun Bijani

[NOTE FROM PROGRAM DIRECTOR RYAN MCCREDDEN: SportsRadio 610 is not a station with one voice or one mantra.  We are one station with 26 voices that all have their own thoughts and opinions on every team in this city and every thing in life. 

Passion is what drives sports.  Sports radio is a forum meant for opinions.   Strong opinions.  Some you may agree with others you may not.  That is the beauty of what we do in sports radio.  We bring out passion from passionate fan bases.  Yesterday an opinion story was written about UH Coach Tom Herman and the schools that he could leave for in the future.  That was an opinion that many people agree with however many people do not.  Now, a rebuttal piece has been written from another person here at SportsRadio 610 that you may agree with, or you may not. Either way, like all of our opinions and stories, this is meant to do one thing.  Create an emotion with the listener or reader.

SportsRadio 610 is many voices.  All with their own thoughts.  All looking to generate an emotion.

You may just want to be spoon fed similar opinions to what you have and bury your head in the sand.  Or you may want to hear and read all sorts of opinions and make up your own mind.  We will always give you the latter.]

So, our web guy Garret wrote an article yesterday titled “Tom Herman Should Leave UH For These 9 Programs.” He thinks we need to have a hard conversation with Houston Cougar fans.

This is laughable.

The last thing we, and by we, I mean Coog Nation need to do is have a conversation with someone that is going to tell us that our current head football coach is going to leave us for greener pastures.

Man, I haven’t heard that one before.

I’ll concede this to Garret “the web guy”, the contention that Tom Herman is going to stay at the University of Houston might be moot. How many head football coaches stick around for any great amount of time in college these days?

Not many.

In fact, there are only 10 coaches in FBS football that have been with their current programs longer than 12 seasons.

The least of which, Mark Dantonio, the head ball coach at Michigan State, is entering his 13th season in East Lansing, Michigan.

Currently, the longest tenured coach in college football is Oklahoma head man, Bob Stoops.

Stoops, entering his 18th season at Oklahoma University, may very well reach his 190th career win this season. He begins the 2016-2017 campaign tied for 30th all-time in coaching victories with 179. Tom Herman and the No. 15 Cougars hope to hand Stoops and the 3rd ranked Sooners their first loss of the season in college football’s opener September 3rd at NRG.

Think back to last year for a second. Twenty-Eight FBS head coaching positions changed. There are 127 full members in D-1 FBS this season.

College football is not a sport that has long been known for its job security.

Thus, even the most die-hard Houston Cougar fan understands that one of the youngest head coaches in college football will eventually move on.

What? Did you forget that prior to Herman, 41, the University of Houston, which has had a football program since 1946 has employed only 13 head coaches? Seven of them have come since the end of the Dana Dimel era in 2002.

I’ll let Garret, “the web guy”, and you in on a little secret.

Herman isn’t leaving anytime soon.

Herman wants to win. He wants to win in Houston and he wants to win in Houston bad.

He did a helluva job in his first season, going 13-1 with a victory over Florida State in the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl that meant a helluva lot more to the Cougars program than it did for the Seminoles.

Herman might not have taken this job for this reason, but I’m willing to bet that at least the idea that he could build something special inside and outside of the lines was always there for a guy that was looking for his first shot at being a FBS head football coach.

To climb the ladder, you have to be able to build a program, sustain a program and take a program to new heights. To do what Herman wants to do here requires leaving the program in a better situation than it was inherited.

One 13-1 season doesn’t accomplish all of those things. One 13-1 season doesn’t buy you the type of job Herman one day wants to get.

He’s a guy that want’s to prove his naysayers wrong. He wants to make believers out of those doubters.

He carries a chip on his shoulder when he goes to bed and it’s still there when he wakes up.

Herman could have jumped ship after last season but he didn’t. His name was thrown around in connection with a number of more high profile programs before they even set foot on the field at the Peach Bowl.

A man in his profession, at his level certainly, has high expectations.

He has high expectations for the program he is trying to build, the culture he is trying to create and he has high expectations for himself. If he doesn’t, he’s in the wrong line of work.

Prior to the Peach Bowl, Herman was linked to Missouri and South Carolina. There were reports of Herman being linked to the Baylor job, which was left vacant after Art Briles wore out his welcome in Waco a few months ago amid a sexual abuse scandal in the football program.

Maybe those schools, programs, cities, states just didn’t suit him. Maybe they weren’t good enough.

Herman doesn’t settle for good enough, no successful ball coach does.

The University of Houston stepped up, pulled out all of the stops to keep Herman around and under contract for the next 5 years after one of the biggest wins in the programs history.

The commitment is certainly there from the program, and here are 5 reasons why Herman will reciprocate that commitment to the University and fan base.

  1. Recruiting is on the rise: Tom Herman and his staff signed 21 players for the 2015 class. Sixteen of which are from Texas. 6 of them were 3-star recruits and 1 was a 4-star. In the 2016 class, Herman and his staff assembled the best recruiting class in school history. Herman locked up the No. 4 prospect in the nation, the 5-star Westfield defensive tackle Ed Oliver. He certainly helped pave the way to signing 4 more 4-star recruits and 13 3-star recruits.
  2. Transfers: One 13-1 season, the best recruiting class in the history of the program and some new digs certainly helped UH become a transfer destination as well. Herman welcomes former Aggie QB Kyle Allen, OT Na’Ty Rodgers joins the team this year after transferring late last year from Iowa Western Community College as the no.7 overall junior college player. Duke Catalon, a running back from Texas along with former Baylor WR Tren’Davian Dickson, CB JJ Dallas and Oklahoma State transfer Ra’Shaad Samples. It’s only the beginning, stemming from a winning culture that Herman will see through.
  3. Big 12 conference potential: We’ve heard this before, and for a long while now. It seems more real than ever before though, as leaving conference USA at the conclusion of the 2012 season to the American was essentially a lateral move. The Big 12 could be calling soon, but Herman knows that it’s going to take more than one winning season, a new stadium and the most anticipated season in a decade to make the jump.
  4. The timing is right: This past Spring, Herman spoke about his previous coaching jobs and admitted that he learned what made him a better coach and made for a better program was spending “time with those around you. In our game we spell love with time. That is how you earn trust with one another.” Herman has the time and now the money with a new 5 year contract from UH to be able to afford to wait for the next challenge in his career; He’s not done here yet.
  5. Facilities are growing: If in fact the Cougars are accepted into the Big 12, there would be reason to believe with bigger and better programs coming in, TDECU Stadium would have to be able to accommodate more fans. I haven’t forgotten that t hasn’t even been a year since Herman verbalized his impatience with attendance at TDECU stadium, but that was before the conclusion of a 13-1 season and one of the biggest victories in the history of the program. TDECU stadium seats 40,000 fans currently but was built to expand and accommodate up to 60,000. When the Cougars enter a higher profile conference, they’ll need every one of those.

Tom Herman will most likely leave for another challenge somewhere down the road. That’s what coaches do. It’s an amazing thing really, being able to have that knowledge and leadership quality. To be able to go from place to place and change the lives of young men and people around you, impart that work ethic, passion and drive in others and be that leader of men.

Some find that special place that for whatever reason, feels like home to them. It feels like they have work to do, and it doesn’t feel like work, it feels like a challenge and a calling. That’s how Tom Herman has approached his position at UH.

Maybe we need to have a conversation about how we approach our own jobs.

  1. Well this article is an improvement upon the original “Herman is Gone” parroted tripe, but still doesn’t consider some essential, or should we say existential, aspects. Are we really that unbalanced of a society that we expect that any good coach is panting to jump to a situation that pays more money? Or that has every conceivable competitive advantage? Where is the challenge in that? More importantly, where is the virtue in that? Most importantly, where is the happiness in that? Have we not learned yet that money does not equal happiness? Indeed, as a MENSA (high I.Q. society) member, Tom Herman should be keenly aware of the pitfalls, dangers and pathos involved in signing on with one of those “blue-chip” programs that chews up and spits out coaches like a meat-grinder. He should be very wary of spoiled boosters and bratty fans with little patience and less loyalty at these “championship-or-bust” schools. He has surely talked with his buddy Mack Brown, who actually won a national championship at UT and then was unceremoniously booted not too many years later. How did that national championship worked out for Les Miles at LSU? He was nearly ousted in a coup last year, and is hanging on by a thread this season. Mark Richt at Georgia was dumped after winning everything except a national championship. How about our buddy Kevin Sumlin, who was the “hot young coach” just five years ago, and better win big this year or he may be canned at A&M. Who in their right mind would bail from an almost perfect situation at Houston to sign up for this kind of frustration and abuse? Are we totally deaf, dumb and blind to perhaps the most important philosophical, spiritual and practical advice ever given: the happiest man needs the least to be happy? The best job for anyone is where they are most happy. Sure, you’d like to have adequate compensation. I’d say $3 million per year qualifies there. Meanwhile, if challenge is Herman’s criteria, then he has it at UH. The most challenging job for a coach is to win as an underdog. Any coach should be able to step into a UT, Alabama, Florida State, USC, Ohio State, Michigan, or any number of other programs and win a national title. Doing so at Houston would trump any of those achievements. Tom Herman is already the talk and the toast of college football. How are you going to improve on that? And the reason he is is because where he is. Big 12 or no Big 12, he can win forever at UH, vie regularly for a national championship, enjoy a patient and loyal fan base and administration, be the king of the fourth largest city in America, keep his family settled, and continue to make news while spreading his “gospel of UH.” That “gospel” is based on love… love for teammates, love for university, love for city, love for one another. Love implies loyalty. Hey, this guy seems to be on to something even deeper than football. If he decides to spurn the money and “prestige” of the filthy rich vultures who would poach another team’s coach (because they can’t find their own new, fresh but untested candidate) so that he might stay at Houston, accepting the greater challenge, he will be making a huge statement to not just college football but all of America that will reverberate for as long as he continues on that higher pathway. The gospel of UH, indeed! Match that, any “blue-chip” thieves!

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