Ahead of move to SEC, Texas coach Steve Sarkisian focused first on winning the Big 12

Sarkisian led the Longhorns to a 6-3 record and third place finish in the Big 12 last year, can he win it all before moving to the SEC?

AUSTIN, Texas — It’s no secret the Texas Longhorns are not long for the world of Big 12 football. Texas and Oklahoma will be joining the SEC in 2024 after terms on an early exit were agreed to earlier this year, meaning both the Longhorns and Sooners are preparing for their final year in the Big 12.

Locked on SEC host Chris Gordy got a chance to catch up with Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian and he spoke on a variety of topics, including playing Alabama this year and the return of the Lone Star Showdown between Texas and Texas A&M once the Longhorns are officially in the SEC.

However, Sarkisian was quite happy to focus his attention on the upcoming season, the final one in the Big 12, rather than looking ahead.

“So many times I’m doing interviews I’m getting asked questions about the SEC, the SEC, the SEC, the reality of it is our goal is to go win the Big 12,” Sarkisian said. “It just so happens to be the last year. I think we got a pretty good roster that gives us a chance to go do that.”

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Texas flipped their 3-6 conference record from 2021 into a 6-3 record last season, resulting in a third place finish and an appearance in the Alamo Bowl, where they lost 27-20 to Sark’s old team the Washington Huskies.

The Longhorns now have to replace star running back Bijan Robinson and fellow backfield teammate Roschon Johnson, who were selected in the NFL draft by Atlanta and Chicago, respectively.

A first place finish would be a feather in the cap of Texas’ final season in the Big 12, although they’ll face stiff competition from TCU, Kansas State, Baylor, Texas Tech, and fellow future SEC member Oklahoma.

The season kicks off for the Longhorns on September 2 at home against Rice.

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