Houston head coach Tom Herman seems to be a man who says exactly what he thinks, as evidenced by his candid interviews about his career and, well, his January spat with a Houston radio show.
So when it's time to get local business leaders fired up about contributing to the city's most recently successful sports venture, one way to make your case could be to remind them how good it feels to tower over a state rival.
Via Joseph Duarte of the Houston Chronicle:
Tom Herman to Rotary Club: 'We understand the price of a championship. That price is same for Alabama as it is for Ohio State and UH.'— Joseph Duarte (@Joseph_Duarte) May 12, 2016
Herman: 'In order to pay that price you've got to be willing 2 invest. There's a price for 9-win seasons & prices for 8, 7-, 6-win seasons.'— Joseph Duarte (@Joseph_Duarte) May 12, 2016
Herman (cont.): 'Those prices are a lot easier to pay. And if you're satisfied w/ going 7-5 and going to Poulan Weedeater Bowl then great.'— Joseph Duarte (@Joseph_Duarte) May 12, 2016
Tom Herman (cont.): 'Then you're in the wrong program and we'll find a place for you to go.'— Joseph Duarte (@Joseph_Duarte) May 12, 2016
More Herman: 'I hear there's a private school up in Dallas that's really looking to try to get to 7 wins. We can certainly find you a home.'— Joseph Duarte (@Joseph_Duarte) May 12, 2016
(How dare anyone besmirch one of the names of the many-named bowl that would become today's hallowed Camping World Independence Bowl. SMU hasn't played in it, FWIW.)
UH just won the American Athletic Conference and the Peach Bowl in Herman's first year, while division mate SMU hasn't won more than eight games in a season since its famed NCAA excitement in the 1980s. New Mustangs head coach Chad Morris seems prepared to offer a second straight year of improvement in 2016, but ... yeah, a 7-5 record and bowl trip would sound great in Dallas this year. Meanwhile, Houston's sights are set as high as can be.
Investment and preparation are common themes for Herman. Here he was weeks into his first season:
At 6 a.m. in an airport, Herman segues a conversation about efficient line play to why it's important to have the facility floors professionally cleaned at least every other week.
"I think to the credit of the senior staff now, they really get it. In the city of Houston, you never know when a five-star recruit could walk in the door. The American Athletic Conference won't like me saying this, but my new mantra is, what if Bob Bowlsby stopped by, or Mike Slive? Would we be ready, would we be proud? At that point, it's too late to clean the carpets."