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The Charlie Strong rumor tracker: Texas’ head coach is on the hot seat again

We’ll update this as more emerges throughout the season.

Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports

It certainly seemed that after Texas’ 49-31 loss to Oklahoma State, the heat was being turned up on head coach Charlie Strong. Depending on who or what you believe, Strong is either being strongly evaluated at the current moment or his move to take over the defense isn’t good enough, and he’s set to be fired anyway.

This offseason, things weren’t exactly copacetic in Austin, with Houston’s Tom Herman widely considered the top candidate to take over at UT soon. But Strong believed a win over Notre Dame in the season opener could get the ship righted quickly. That’s what he told our Steven Godfrey beforehand.

Strong then produced said victory in Texas’ opener, and everyone was happy. Then, things went back to the way they were (read: the defense remained porous) and here we are, compiling reports that Strong’s tenure is varying degrees of toast.

Here’s the tracker.

Oct. 1

After Texas lost at Oklahoma State to fall to 2-2, reported that it was evaluation time.

Of course, Texas put those comments in the spin cycle ...

... but Richardson had the receipts to back his tweets up.

ESPN’s Brett McMurphy was told the night of the OSU loss that Strong was good, for now.

This year's Oklahoma game is critical for Strong, but his future does not depend on the outcome, the source said. If the Longhorns continue to struggle, though, the most likely scenario is that the defensive staff would be sacrificed for Strong to return in 2017, the source said.

Buuut ...

Oct. 3

Strong relieved defensive coordinator Vance Bedford of his playcalling duties. Perrin attended the presser, an unusual move for him, and one Strong was asked about.

None of this sounded good at all.

Oct. 4, or thereabouts

Fox Sports’ Bruce Feldman said it’s "close to a guarantee" that Texas would land Houston coach Tom Herman if it fired Strong. Herman is arguably the best coaching prospect since Utah Urban Meyer.

Oct. 5

Texas president Greg Fenves at least had nice things to say:

Ugh, that sounds like a vote of confidence. And votes of confidence are not good. Votes of confidence tend to precede coaches getting fired.

Texas plays Oklahoma in the Red River Rivalry on Saturday. For the sake of his job, Strong would be best served to win that game.