Charlie Strong: “I’m taking over the defense”

Charlie Strong says he'll run the defense, Vance Bedford will coach secondary with Clay Jennings. (KXAN Photo)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — UT football coach Charlie Strong announced on Monday he is now going to call the plays on defense.

The Longhorns have given up at least 47 points in three of their four games this year, including Saturday’s 49-31 loss at Oklahoma State.

“I have been a defensive coordinator. I’ve called plays. It’s a rhythm,” Strong told reporters during a news conference Monday morning.

The move amounts to a demotion for Vance Bedford, who has been Strong’s defensive coordinator since 2010 when both were at Louisville.

“You have to do what’s best for the program,” said Strong of demoting his longtime assistant.

The Longhorns installed four new starters on defense last week but still gave up 555 yards to the Cowboys. During his news conference, Strong was asked why he didn’t take over the defense sooner.

“This time right now feels like the move to be made,” said Strong whose own job may be in jeopardy.

In a report published Monday, Sports Illustrated cites a high-ranking Texas official who says Strong is “very close” to being fired. When asked about the report, Strong said, “what’s going to be said is going to be said, same situation from last year. ”

It may be the exact same situation as last year.  The Longhorns are getting ready to face Oklahoma this week. There were reports last year that Strong saved his job by beating the Sooners.

The Longhorns have lost two straight after opening with wins against Notre Dame and UTEP.  They are underdogs in this week’s game against Oklahoma.

KXAN tonight will have the latest updates on Strong and Bedford and what this means for Longhorns. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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