North Texas Daily

Column: As good as gone

Column: As good as gone

Column: As good as gone
February 14
00:14 2019

When North Texas hired Seth Littrell in December 2015, there was a belief that Littrell planned to stay in Denton for the long haul and that he was here for an extended rebuild.

That expectation quickly ended this off-season when Littrell entertained a couple of openings, most notably Kansas State. The Wildcats and Littrell’s representatives were deep into details of a deal when a snag came up and Littrell pulled himself out of the running for the job.

According to Tom Martin, the deal fell through when Littrell wanted to clean house in Manhattan and the Wildcats said no. What does all of this mean now?

Well, it means that Littrell already has one foot out the door. He lost his offensive coordinator Graham Harrell to Southern California and John David Baker has also left North Texas for the Trojans as an offensive analyst, according to Bruce Feldman.

According to a report from the Denton Record Chronicle, North Texas will hire Bodie Reeder as co-offensive coordinator with passing game coordinator Tommy Mainord.

This is Mason Fine’s final season is at the helm. With his superstar quarterback leaving Denton, Littrell is likely to follow him.

The duo of Fine and Littrell took the North Texas program to new heights with the Mean Green grabbing 18 wins and appearing in two bowl games in two years. Fine has amassed 9,471 yards and 64 touchdowns to only 25 interceptions in his North Texas career. Last season, Fine threw for 3,793 yards, 27 touchdowns and only five interceptions, good for a 5.4:1 touchdown to interception ratio.

The only thing left to do is to win Conference USA and a bowl game. With games next season against Cal and Houston, there will be little room for error in conference play. Losses to Alabama-Birmingham and Louisiana Tech cannot happen next season. A close game with Texas-El Paso cannot happen. A loss to an opponent like Old Dominion cannot happen. You have to be able to beat inferior competition, you must rise to the occasion when the big boys are on the schedule.

Last, season, a big issue for North Texas was the lack of offense in the second half of games. A prime example stands in the Old Dominion game, North Texas had a 28-point lead in the second quarter and led 28-10 at the half. The Mean Green offense mustered up three points off a 35-yard Cole Hedlund field goal.

In that game, North Texas lost 34-31.

As the head coach, most of this blame falls on Littrell. He has the final say over what happens and who he wants to run his offense and defense. With his superstar quarterback leaving next year and his offensive coordinator posted up in Southern California, how much longer will Littrell call Apogee Stadium home?

If this off season was any indication, Littrell will most certainly be leaving Denton and North Texas for a bigger program. Just as he nearly did this off season.

Featured Image: Mean Green Head Coach Seth Littrell at media day in Apogee Stadium for the Fall 2018 season. Image by: Trevon McWilliams. 

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Dillon Swan

Dillon Swan

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