College Sports

Prominent Texas Donor McCombs Bashes Strong Hire

The University of Texas Longhorns new head football coach Charlie Strong from Louisville speaks after being introduced during a press conference January 6, 2014 at Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, Texas.  (Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images)

The University of Texas Longhorns new head football coach Charlie Strong from Louisville speaks after being introduced during a press conference January 6, 2014 at Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images)

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AUSTIN (AP) - A billionaire donor to the University of Texas says the hire of new football coach Charlie Strong was like a “kick in the face.”

Red McCombs has donated millions to Texas, and his name is on the north side of the football stadium. He publicly lobbied for Texas to hire Jon Gruden.

Hours after Strong was introduced Monday, McCombs complained to KZDC-AM in San Antonio that he was ignored in the coaching search.

McCombs said Texas got the selection “wrong” and that Strong would be a good position coach or coordinator. He later said he would support Strong and wished him well when they spoke by phone Sunday night.

Texas athletic director Steve Patterson said Strong was the best choice. McCombs did not immediately return a telephone message.

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