Chad Morris has been fired by the University of Arkansas. His final record is a dismal 4-18, posting zero conference wins. He was only able to beat Eastern Illinois and Tulsa in 2018, and Portland State and Colorado State in 2019. Barry Lunney Jr. will serve as the interim head coach for the remainder of the 2019 season.
Most will have seen this coming in the wake of two of the most embarrassing losses in school history at the hands of Mississippi State and Western Kentucky. Now the decision on who will succeed him falls to Athletic Director Hunter Yurachek.
I wanted Morris to work out, as I think most did, but it appeared from the start that he was in over his head. He left no reassurances in his final press conference, deflecting good questions and giving non-answers. While he claimed today that he was “the guy” to lead Arkansas out of this darkness, Yurachek was unconvinced, and who could blame him?
Now, silly season is upon us as the new coaching search begins. I’m sure Hogville is already tracking planes, but I think some realistic candidates include Mike Norvell from Memphis, Eliah Drinkwitz from Appalachian State, and Matt Rhule from Baylor. Despite the struggles of the past several seasons, Arkansas is a better job, and we should be able to offer enough money to tempt many.
Morris’ final buyout is around 10,000,000 dollars, but that’s hardly a drop in the bucket when you consider the money lost with empty seats and cancelled season tickets. I’m cautiously optimistic about the future, though whoever takes the reins will be under intense scrutiny and have a hell of a job to do.
It’s over, Hog fans. It’s done.