Coaching Staff Countdown

Today we'll take a look at a coach that not only graduated from Texas in 1981, but also has years of experience coaching and recruiting against the Longhorns.

It's rare at the University of Texas for the focal points of an offseason not to rest squarely on its players. The stability that comes with having the same head coach for 16 seasons will do that to a program.

This spring appears to be one of those exceptions, though, as the Longhorns prepare to embark on their first spring practice under new head coach Charlie Strong and his staff, which consists of only one holdover from the Mack Brown era (Bruce Chambers).

Because of this, LonghornDigest is going to take a closer look at each member of the staff leading up to the first day of spring practice on March 18.

On Wednesday we took a look at Chambers, Texas' tight ends coach.

Today we'll take a look at a coach that not only graduated from Texas in 1981, but also has years of experience coaching and recruiting against the Longhorns.


Les Koenning


Wide receivers


Graduate assistant at Texas, 1981-83; graduate assistant at Alabama, 1984; wide receivers/recruiting coordinator at Louisiana-Lafayette, 1985; WR at Rice, 1990-93; WR at Duke, 1993 (Dec.); WR at Texas A&M, 1994-96; offensive assistant at Miami Dolphins, 1997; offensive coordinator/QBs at Duke, 1998; OC/QBs at Houston, 1999; passing game coordinator/QBs at TCU, 2000; OC/QBs at Alabama, 2001-02; OC/QB at Texas A&M, 2003-07; OC/QBs at South Alabama, 2008-09; OC/QBs at Mississippi State, 2009-13.

The Koenning Digest:

Experience certainly isn't lacking on this coaching staff, as Koenning is one of six coaches with at least 30 years experience. He's spent the last handful of those directing Mississippi State to its best offensive numbers in school history. He's also been the OC at Duke, Houston, Alabama, Texas A&M and South Alabama. Remember Aggies QB's Reggie McNeal and Stephen McGee? Koenning oversaw their development.

He replaced:

Darrell Wyatt

How he differs from Wyatt:

Both coaches have a wealth of experience under their belt, including time spent at offensive coordinators. The most apparent difference could be Koenning's experience with the program. Both coaches have recruited Texas extensively but Koenning likely has the edge given the relationships he's made with his father, Les Koenning Sr., being one of the best high school coaches in state history.

Player he will most improve:

Redshirt freshman Montrel Meander. The loss of Mike Davis means to its most lethal vertical threat is no longer on the roster. Jaxon Shipley, Marcus Johnson and Kendall Sanders can be that guy. But adding Meander to the mix would be huge for an offense that appears to want to put pressure on safeties off of its play-action from a sound run game. Meander wasn't the most highly regarded of the WRs looking to make a name for themselves, but he impressed Wyatt with his work ethic last season and could be someone Koenning eyes to take Davis' spot this fall.

Recruits will love:

His experience recruiting the state. He's got an extensive Rolodex of high school coaches from his time roaming the state with his father, one of the state's all-time winningest coaches. He'll know quirky things about small-town Texas and these high school programs that recruits could relate well too. Also, coaches usually coach with a heightened passion when they're at their alma mater.

Predicting coaching future:

Koenning was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at his last four stops prior to Texas. So it says a lot that he'd take on a roll with less control to get back to his alma mater and coach with Strong, whom he's known for a while. There will surely be chances for him to take over as the OC again, but we'll say the Houston native will end his career at the same place he started it in 1981.

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