"We'll win championships. We'll build men of character. We'll graduate our players. And we will do it all with integrity and class."
That was Tom Herman on Nov. 28, 2016, when he was introduced as head coach of Texas. So when does the character, integrity and class part begin?
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Herman finished his first season as Longhorns' head coach with a 7-6 mark and a win in the Texas Bowl — the program's first above.-500 mark and bowl victory since 2013 and 2012, respectively. However, the 42-year-old closed the book on his first year with a stain. He crossed the line by mocking a student-athlete.
After Texas cornerback Davante Davis intercepted Missouri quarterback Drew Lock in the final minute of their 33-16 Texas Bowl victory, Davis imitated Lock's signature celebration, which entails strapping on an invisible backpack. Davis' antics were fine. Lock and Missouri likely didn't appreciate it but players often imitate celebrations. But then Herman — again, the 42-year-old adult who preached character, integrity and class 13 months earlier — joined the party.
When asked about it after the game, Lock called Texas a "nobody."
"They showed us a video at our luncheon [on Tuesday] and it was all highlights of old Texas. …The saying was, 'We are Texas,'" Lock told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "You can look at it like this is a pretty big program. And when the head coach is mocking your dance move you must be doing something right. You're not a nobody. You're definitely doing something that's catching other people's attention.
"When you think about, 'We are Texas,' and 'We are the amazing program we've always been,' and the head coach is doing that, I'm going to walk with my head high and a little chip on my shoulder when that happened."
Herman is supposed to the level-headed leader on the sideline. He's supposed to let his players have fun with the celebration then move on, shake hands and celebrate after the final horn. Instead, he released a stunning level of immaturity by mocking a student-athlete. He needs to grow up, apologize and lead by example.