Longhorns Fall to Oregon in Mack Brown's Final Game as Head Coach
Update: The Longhorns got trampled 30-7 by the University of Oregon Ducks tonight in the Alamo Bowl in San Antonio.
The Ducks ran two interceptions for touchdowns, spoiling what was the farewell game for Longhorns' Head Coach Mack Brown, who is retiring after 16 seasons with UT.
Despite the loss -- and a 30-21 record in his final four seasons -- the crowd gave Brown a warm send-off. UT athletic director Steve Patterson has said the team intends to name Brown's successor by January 15th.
Original story: It's not unusual for the University of Texas at Austin's football team to appear in a post-season bowl game. But tonight, when the Longhorns take on Oregon in the Alamo Bowl, there is one twist: it is the last game as Head Coach for Mack Brown.
Brown became the Longhorns' 28th head football coach on December 4, 1997.
On December 15, 2013, after months of speculation, Brown made the announcement that he will retire at the end of the 2013 season.
After a few disappointing seasons since 2010, many fans and observers have considered the team to be underperforming and were clamoring for change.
The 62-year-old coach joins the ranks of iconic former Texas football coaches, including Darrell K Royal who led the team from 1957-1976 and never posted a losing season.
"Meeting Coach Royal and being around him and getting to know him on a personal basis like an older brother was unbelievable," Brown said at his retirement press conference earlier this month. "The first day he walked out on the practice field, I was so proud to be the head coach of Texas."
At the press conference, Brown also noted some of his most memorable moments coaching the Longhorns: Ricky Williams winning the Heisman Trophy in 1998, and the 2005 national championship season with Vince Young at quarterback.
But Brown's stint at Texas has seen its trials as well. He acknowledged there were plenty of rough days, and not just on the field. Brown remembered Cole Pittman, a UT defensive tackle who was killed in a car accident heading back to Spring football practice in February of 2001.
"I'm responsible for the precious things that those parents send you. They're the most previous things in your life - your children - and we lost one," Brown said.
Brown added that the 1999 bonfire collapse at Texas A&M University that killed 12 people was a horror that he remembers each year.
"When you lose your children there is nothing worth that in the world, and I think about that every Thanksgiving because there are 12 families that don't have a good Thanksgiving," Brown said. "And that will never go away."
But Brown said his time coaching the Longhorns brought plenty of good memories as well, and he wants his legacy to be about the poise with which he handled adverse situations.
"Bringing some joy to Texas, getting us back on track. The standard is set much higher now than it was when I was here," he said. "I did that with integrity and class."
Whatever Brown does on or off the 40 acres, he said he's ready to move forward.
"I have no regrets at all, and probably stepping away will add 10 years to my life. Maybe 20," he said.
The Alamo Bowl against Oregon kick off at 5:45 p.m.