When Texas fired embattled athletic director Steve Patterson on Tuesday after just 22 tumultuous months on the job, it didn't merely signal that the Longhorns had made a huge mistake not properly vetting him before hiring him.
It also served as a reminder of the issues Shaka Smart was willing to endure to become the next coach at Texas.
Smart is way too savvy to have made the jump from VCU to Texas last April without first researching his new athletic director's history of alienating those around him. He had to know that Patterson had already made enemies in Austin by raising ticket prices, firing respected longtime employees, forcing coaches to pay for their own meals and not bothering to spend enough time schmoozing with the school's wealthiest donors. He also had to know Patterson pulled many similar stunts during his fiascoe of a tenure as Portland Trail Blazers general manager.
Yet Smart took the Texas job anyway in April, accepting a six-year, $22 million contract from theRead More »from Shaka Smart, Steve Patterson and the allure of the Texas job