Source: UT Austin donors can influence future of Charlie Strong

Texas coach Charlie Strong yells during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game against California Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
Texas coach Charlie Strong yells during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game against California Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

AUSTIN (KXAN) – Sources said Monday afternoon that some University of Texas at Austin donors are pushing the school to fire coach Charlie Strong.

At his weekly press conference, Coach Strong said his focus is on Friday’s game against Texas Christian University.

Donors said it’s no secret that those who make the biggest contributions have the biggest impact.  A few who wanted to remain anonymous said that it’s best to leave Coach Strong alone and let him finish out his contract.

According to a NCAA report from 2015, donors contributed more than $31 million to the football program alone. The gifts and donations ranged from $50 to more than $100,000 and help with scholarships, recruiting and financing and maintaining venues.

UT Athletics has its own budget which is made up of ticket sales, donations or gifts and licensing fees. The Longhorn Foundation, the fundraising arm of Texas Athletics, reports that the athletics budget is $180 million and football makes up the largest portion.

Red McCombs is among the well-known Longhorn donors. He’s donated millions to Texas. McCombs bashed Coach Strong’s hiring in January of 2014 and later apologized. He told a San Antonio newspaper earlier this month that he does not count himself among the people pushing to fire Strong. KXAN tried to talk to McCombs Monday, but our calls were not returned.