STRONG: "I DON'T RUN FROM ANYTHING."

Charlie Strong said Monday he addressed his players last week about rumors of him possibly going to Miami.

"I told the players I'm not going anywhere," Strong said. "I made a commitment. I'm here. And I'm here for the duration."

Redshirt freshman safety John Bonney said players appreciated Strong's message.

"He told us not to listen to that and he wasn't going anywhere," Bonney said. "It was reassuring, because all of us feel real strongly about Coach Strong."

Asked Monday how it felt to read about the possibility of him looking for a way out of Austin, Strong said, "I don't run from anything.

"When you work so hard to place yourself in this position, nothing's ever tough. You grind it out. We always talk to our players about, 'Hey, hang in there. It may not be the way you want. But so what? You just grow up. You can't have self pity.'

"A lot of times, guys want self pity. There's no self pity. A lot of times, you're in the position you're in because of what you did to yourself. We didn't do a good enough job of coaching. If we had done a better job of coaching, we wouldn't be in this position."

Strong was asked if Texas is all it's made out to be  as one of the best jobs in college football, when the academic support chief for athletics (Randa Ryan) has been on leave almost the entire football season, the athletic director who hired Strong (Steve Patterson) turned out to be a disaster and was fired 22 months into a six-year contract, and there is no timetable to improve football facilities?

"I know so much has been made about what you don't have," Strong said. "I've come from programs, where if you look at our facilities, sometimes just throw some paint up on the wall, and they're going to be fine.

"It's not like you walk into a facility and say, 'We're so far behind.' What are we behind on? Because we don't have a barber shop in our locker room? I don't know.

"When you recruit, it's all about recruiting character and recruiting young men who want to be here. Recruiting-wise, a lot of players are not into the flash. Some players are. Some players aren't. If they're into the flash, this may not be the place for them.

"But they're going to have a chance to walk out into the stadium and play in front of a big-time crowd. At the University of Texas, the commitment is here. Now, it's about us getting it right and doing our part also."

Strong was asked how much of the accountability for this year's 4-6 season should be on the players?

"It's also on us," Strong said. "I start with that first game at Notre Dame, and I probably built that game up so much myself, even before that game, like two weeks before, I started showing the players something about the tradition of Notre Dame and our tradition.

"And then we get there and just don't play well. And then the Cal game, where we are a point away and if we had just stopped them one or two times on D. Then, you look at the Oklahoma State game. There's games like the TCU game and Iowa State game where we just walked out there and don't do anything.

"And we could have done a better job of coaching and preparing our kids to go play. And I look at myself and I could have done a whole lot better job than what we did."

 


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