We’re keeping an eye out on the college football carousel and how it affects the Hogs in the next couple of months. We’ll keep updating this as new hirings are made and new jobs open up.
Arkansas News and Notes
Here’s our initial look at who may be a good fit for the Arkansas job. There are a ton of names here and are in no particular order. It was also written right after Bielema was fired so obviously as the landscape changes so does how relevant some of these names are.
- Before Bielema was fired, the main SB Nation site put out that Arkansas had their eyes on Gus Malzahn, but then he went and won the dang Iron Bowl. So a lot of wind just left the Gus to Arkansas sails.
- Barrett Sallee put out an article saying that Mike Norvell and Brent Venables have emerged as candidates for the job. Then there is also this.
Arkansas is eyeing two head coaches for their vacancy that are both coaching their current teams this weekend. I don’t expect an announcement before Sunday. JCP told current coaches a new coach would be named within 10 days from Saturday when she met with them.— Trey Schaap (@trey1037TheBuzz) November 27, 2017
Two head coaches with games this week? Well that would seem to back up the Norvell and Venables talk. Norvell has a conference championship against UCF, while Venables and Clemson have the ACC Championship.
Of course they aren’t the only two coaching this weekend. Other names that have been thrown around for various coaching jobs include Scott Frost, Neal Brown, Lane Kiffin, and yes Gus Malzahn are all coaching this weekend.
11/28: The biggest news today was the official naming of search firms for both the football coach and AD searches.
University of Arkansas makes search firms official: Korn Ferry for AD search; DHR International working with athletics for FB coach search— Thomas Murphy (@TomMurphyADG) November 28, 2017
11/29: Not much news today, if Arkansas is waiting on word from Malzahn, or Norvell, or anyone playing this weekend there might not be much news until Sunday. Although Tom Murphy reports that Arkansas reached out to Texas Tech AD Kirby Hocutt and he was not interested.
11/30: Big news of the day was that multiple outlets said that Tulsa AD Derrick Gragg would be the next Arkansas AD. Turns out the initial report may have been premature. Gragg still could end up being the AD but the agreement hasn’t been made yet.
12/1: News on a new coach but ESPN reported Bielema’s buyout was settled at over $11 million, which is neither the $15 million nor $6 million being tossed around.
12/2: Auburn and Gus Malzahn lost the SEC Championship game, meaning speculation and PLANEWATCH2K17 are on full alert on social media.
12/3: After speculation and all around tomfoolery from local media. Sunday was a day that was going to show if Gus was coming or not.
The idea that was an extreme long shot at best reached a fever pitch after the SEC Championship game, and even included the legend Bob Holt getting cut off on the Peach Bowl teleconference. The search moves on to other names which includes Mike Norvell and Chad Morris.
12/5: Reports all over the place that Chad Morris is the Hogs choice and should be happening soon. Football Scoop is also reporting that Morris will attempt to bring Brent Venables as his DC as well. The two previously worked together at Clemson.
Chad Morris targeting Brent Venables for his DC at Arkansas sure does sound good... https://t.co/RuDTVYuhxx— FootballScoop Staff (@FootballScoop) December 5, 2017
Who Else Fired Their Coach?
Who Did They Fire?: Jim McElwain after things got really out of hand at Florida.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Yes, they grabbed Dan Mullen from Mississippi State. Mullen was offensive coordinator for the Gators from 2005-2008.
Who Did They Fire?: Jim Mora. They fired him on his birthday.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: They got free agent super coach Chip Kelly after he was apparently close to heading to Florida.
Who Did They Fire?: Kevin Sumlin. Apparently a 51-26 record doesn’t cut it.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: No but things are getting spicy with reports about the Aggies and Jimbo Fisher.
Update (12/1): Jimbo Fisher and Texas A&M, a match made in 10-year, $75 million heaven.
Who Did They Fire?: Hugh Freeze after...uh yeah.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: After 6-6 year that ended with an Egg Bowl win, they took the interim tag off Matt Luke.
Who Did They Fire?: Butch Jones. Champion of Life, but not Football.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?:
Greg Schian-oh dear. They are currently still looking.
Update (11/28): Reports that Tennessee is going after Mike Gundy (and potentially doubling his salary) are running wild.
Update (11/29): After the attempt to get Gundy fell through, Tennessee is reportedly close to getting Purdue HC Jeff Brohm.
Update (11/29): So that’s a no on Brohm. Next in line is Dave Doeren.
Update (11/30): Dave Doeren signed an extension. Come on down Kevin Sumlin?
Update (12/1): That’s a no to Kevin Sumlin and Mike Leach as well. Also Phillip Fulmer is the AD after pulling some House of Cards moves.
Who Did They Fire?: Mike Riley after an uneventful and unsuccessful three years.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Scott Frost is the betting favorite for the job at his alma mater. Other candidates could potentially include Bielema or even going the triple option route.
Update (12/2): They got their man in Scott Frost after an emotional AAC Championship win.
Who Did They Fire?: Todd Graham, who went 7-5 but was on the hot seat all year.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: No but Kevin Sumlin and Derek Mason (who is from the Phoenix area) are names of interest.
Update 11/28: Herm Edwards? Really? In what is totally a completely unrelated note, Arizona State’s AD was previously Edwards’ agent. Purely a coincidence I’m sure.
Update 12/4: Herm Edwards has been officially announced.
Who Did They Fire?: Well Gary Andersen wasn’t exactly fired, but nonetheless he’s gone.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Reports that they hired Cal OC and former Eastern Washington coach Beau Baldwin surfaced, but no official word is out.
Update (11/29): Instead of Baldwin, Washington OC John Canzano will return to his alma mater to be the head coach.
Who Did They Fire?: Sean Kluger got fired all the way back in September.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Mike Price came back to be their interim but no permanent announcement has been made.
Who Did They Fire?: David Bailiff after 11 seasons.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: No, they’re likely looking at P5 assistants, including South Carolina’s OC Kurt Roper.
Update (12/5): They’ve hired Stanford’s OC Mike Bloomgren.
Who Did They Fire?: Joey Jones, who lost 52-0 to previously winless Georgia Southern. Which will get you fired just about everywhere.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: No but there is a lot of talk about Auburn OC Chip Lindsey.
Who Did They Fire?: Tyson Summers got fired long before that 52-0 win against South Alabama.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Sounds like they are taking the interim tag off Chad Lunsford.
Who Did They Fire?: Paul Haynes is gone after five losing seasons.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Nope. And you’re guess to who they get is as good as mine.
Who Did They Fire?: Mark Hudspeth, once a hot coaching candidate for big jobs, stuck it out too long at ULL.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Lots of Power 5 Coordinators are being tossed around for this job.
Jobs Open Due to The Coach Getting Hired Elsewhere
What Happened?: Dan Mullen is a Gator once again.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Their search is still in a pretty early stage.
Update 11/29: Last night they announced they were hiring Penn State OC Joe Moorhead
What Happened?: Jimbo Fisher kicked his Christmas tree to the curb when Texas A&M offered 10 years and $75 million.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: The first rumors being kicked around are centered around Oregon coach Willy Taggart.
Update (12/5): Willy Taggart is official, opening things up at Oregon.
What Happened?: Scott Frost is heading back to his alma mater.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: Kevin Sumlin rumors are coming in fast for the job.
Update (12/5): They’ve brought in Missouri OC Josh Heupel.
What Happened?: Willie Taggart is heading back to his home state of Florida, leaving those at Oregon pretty upset at his departure.
Do They Have A Coach Yet?: They are another school Kevin Sumlin rumors have been flying around at.
Other Notable Things
Iowa State backed up that money truck and gave Matt Campbell a big ol’ raise and extension. That means he’s off the board for schools looking this year, including Arkansas.
Ole Miss also received their penalties from the NCAA, here is a list of them.