“If you’re going to struggle in the Big 12, you might as well struggle in the SEC.”: Former Florida Gators HC Steve Spurrier comments on Texas Longhorns moving to SEC

Former South Carolina HC Steve Spurrier
Former South Carolina HC Steve Spurrier
Walter Sharp

Former South Carolina and Florida's head coach Steve Spurrier threw a massive virtual jab at the Texas Longhorns.

Steve Spurrier coached 23 years in the SEC conference for the Florida Gators and South Carolina Gamecocks. Spurrier finished his 12 years at Florida with a 122-27-1 record. After taking his coaching talents to the NFL for two years, Spurrier took a year away from coaching before accepting the South Carolina job.

If there's a coach that knows the SEC in and out, it's Spurrier. Spurrier spent 11 years with the Gamecocks and posted an 86-49-0. Which explains his recent comments about the Texas Longhorns joining the conference in 2025.

Spurrier caught up with Paul Finebaum and expressed his opinion on the recent news about Texas and Oklahoma.

"If you're going to struggle in the Big 12, you might as well struggle in the SEC."

His comments have brought serious questions that the Texas Longhorns will have to ask themselves at some point. Where does Texas need to improve to compete with the top-tiered SEC teams?

What do the Texas Longhorns need to do to prove Steve Spurrier wrong?

Texas v Kansas State
Texas v Kansas State

The Texas Longhorns have roughly four seasons to start building their roster to compete with the top-tiered teams in the SEC. Texas is entering shark-infested waters by joining the SEC. Alabama, Georgia, LSU, and Florida have made names for themselves and will not welcome the Longhorns with open arms.

Not to mention Texas A&M and Auburn are great teams. Texas will be coming from the Big XII, which is extremely top-heavy. The Longhorns will now enter a conference where every Saturday is a must-win game.

That brings us back to the original questions. What do the Texas Longhorns need to do to prove Steve Spurrier wrong, and where do they need to improve to compete with the top-tiered teams in the SEC? Let's take a quick look at the main areas that could help Texas accomplish its goals in the SEC.

#1 Texas need an elite QB to lead their offense

The Longhorns are starting life without Sam Ehlinger behind center. That sounds insane since it felt like Ehlinger was there long enough to cash out a 401k plan.

Ehlinger taking his talents to the NFL leaves the Longhorns with a void to fill at the quarterback position. That's okay for right now. Texas still has enough time to find a quality quarterback before entering the SEC.

The problem is, Texas hasn't won a national championship game since defeating USC in 2005. Colt McCoy led the Longhorns to the national championship but fell short of Alabama. If McCoy hadn't gotten injured, the Longhorns may have won that football game.

Sam Ehlinger stuffed the stat sheets with the Longhorns but never led them to a national championship. The Longhorns will need a mixture of Vince Young and Colt McCoy at quarterback before joining the SEC. Easier said than done, right?

#2 Texas needs Steve Sarkisian to bring some of Nick Saban's secret recruiting juice

The Texas Longhorns didn't take long to name former Alabama offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian as their head coach. Sarkisian put together a record-breaking, awful year as the offensive coordinator at Bama.

What the Longhorns need is for Steve Sarkisian to bring some of Nick Saban's particular recruiting juice. Texas could use Sarkisian's offensive mind, but that will not be enough. The Crimson Tide has one of the top recruiting classes every year. Saban deserves all the credit for that accomplishment.

Steve Sarkisian will now need to smuggle a couple of Saban's juice bottles and bring them to Texas. Sarkisian has to rebuild the Longhorns roster to prepare them for a successful run in the SEC. That could take some time, which brings us to our third point. How long will Texas give Sarkisian to turn the program around?

#3 The Texas Longhorns need to be patient with Steve Sarkisian

It's been said that being the head football coach at the University of Texas is not an easy task. Texas wants to win now and not wait until later. That was proven when the university parted ways with former coach Tom Herman.

If Texas is so desperate to win now, why did they fire Tom Herman? The former Longhorn head coach finished with a 32-18 record at Texas. Not to mention Herman won four straight bowl games.

The University of Texas wants to compete for the college football playoffs, not regular bowl games. That's where Tom Herman failed as the head coach of Texas. Herman was a winner, but he wasn't winning the type of games that Texas wanted him to win.

How will that impact Steve Sarkisian? Sarkisian will feel some heat on his seat from the university, but if Texas wants to compete for a spot in the college football playoffs. They'll need to be patient and trust the process with Sarkisian.

Texas will need to join the SEC with a tenured coach running their football team. That means Sarkisian cannot be four years and out. Unless the Longhorns tank and open the Sarkisian era with four straight losing seasons, they need to give him time.

If the Texas Longhorns want to make Steve Spurrier eat his words, they'll need to let Steve Sarkisian do his job. The outside noise from the Longhorns fan base needs to remain on the outside. Texas does have the potential to compete, but it all starts with recruiting.

Edited by Arnav Kholkar
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