It is that time where the Texas basketball program is about to have to start interviewing their candidates to find who will replace their now former head coach Shaka Smart to assume the same role at the helm this offseason. Texas saw Smart bolt from the Forty Acres to take the head coaching gig with the Marquette Golden Eagles back on March 26.
This came as Smart sat on one of the hottest seats in the entire country following the three-seed Longhorns early exit in March Madness last weekend. Texas fell short in the Round of 64 back on March 20 in big-time upset fashion at the hands of head coach Joe Golding and the 14-seed Abilene Christian Wildcats.
What put Shaka Smart on the hot seat with Texas basketball?
Texas came into that game as nearly a double-digit point favorite, and Smart was looking to get his first postseason win during his six years as the head coach of this program. Instead, he would wind up moving his record in the NCAA Tournament during his time as the Longhorns head coach to 0-3. And none of those three NCAA Tournament losses really came against difficult opponents.
The one-point last-second loss at the hands of upset-minded ACU is likely what cost Smart his job in the end. But before Texas athletic director Chris del Conte could go through the formality of firing/having to buyout Smart this offseason, he took a job to become the next Marquette head coach to replace the now-departed Steve Wojciechowski.
Texas now has a high-profile coaching search looming on the Forty Acres. Which three potential candidates for Texas fit into the “high-risk, high-reward” category for CDC and the Longhorns entering what will be a long offseason for this hoops program?