Texas, in its first year under head coach Steve Sarkisian, is in the midst of its first four-game losing streak since the 2010 season.
Things boiled over last Saturday when the Longhorns were blown out 30-7 on the road by Iowa State. It was a loss that dropped Texas to 4-5 on the season. And in the days that followed that loss, a video leaked that featured defensive line coach Bo Davis cursing out players on one of the team buses after the game.
Based on what was said in the clip, Davis was furious about players laughing and joking on the bus after the loss. The profane language Davis used when addressing a group of college athletes, though, has been a source of controversy since the clip leaked online.
Some have said Davis went too far and that amateur athletes should not be addressed that way by coaches who are paid large salaries. Others have defended Davis, saying it can take a harsh dose of reality to get players to stop accepting mediocre results and change the mindset of a program that has been underachieving for years.
Asked about the clip on Thursday, Sarkisian confirmed it was indeed Davis. He said the colorful language used by Davis reflected Davis’ “passion” for the game and wanting to turn the program around.
“I think one thing that jumped out to me when I first saw the video was, one, you could hear the passion in Bo’s voice. We really believe in the staff that we hired and what we came here to do. I think you could feel the passion and the want to get it done. I think that Bo exemplifies that,” Sarkisian said.
Sarkisian said football is an emotional sport and things like that are a part of it. He looks at Davis’ passion as a positive.
“We’re here to build a culture that we want. It’s just the culture that we’re looking for, and to stand our ground in what’s acceptable and what’s not,” Sarkisian said. “You're going to have people that buy into what you want to do. We have plenty of young men on our team that are buying in and have continued to buy in and that are doing it the way that we want it done. Clearly, we have some that don't.”
Sarkisian said it was “unfortunate” that a player decided to record the video and send it to others. He said he met with the leadership council on the team to discuss the matter and if the player who released the video should be disciplined.
“Young people, like all of us, make mistakes. That was a mistake that we'll handle internally,” Sarkisian said. "But it's unfortunate because the narrative came out that that's how our entire team feels, and that our entire team would do that. That's clearly not the case. We've got a lot of great players on our team that are committed to the cause that want to be special here at the University of Texas. That's where our focus is. On those guys."
Texas will return to the field on Saturday at home against Kansas. From there, UT rounds out the regular season at West Virginia and with a home game against Kansas State. To reach a bowl game, the Longhorns must win two of those three games.