Insiders: If Jeff Long Were to Leave....

Either on his own or to be dismissed for some reason do you think Scott Varady would be on the short list to replace him . He seems to check many of the boxes given his current role at the Foundation and his long history of legal support to the Athletic Department.

I think Arkansas would hire an experienced AD.

I had never thought of Scott as an AD type. Scott is a lawyer first, fund raiser second. I don’t think he has any experience hiring or managing coaches, or managing a huge department. Right now, the UA is a massive athletic department. It has doubled and redoubled since Jeff Long arrived. That means managing a huge staff with lots of moving parts. Scott has never done that.

I understand that’s some of the concern of the BOT, the growth of AD staff, but your budget quadruples there is going to be growth to manage it.

What Jeff did was to modernize the department. He gave individuals more specific job duties and split tasks that had previously been performed by one person into two or three positions. He brought some things that had been outsourced in house, which created new positions. The growing TV influence has created a lot of positions.

Another thing to remember is that shortly after Jeff arrived, the men’s and women’s departments merged. Prior to that they had been managed by separate staffs housed in separate buildings. That alone caused the staff size to grow substantially over what had been under Broyles.

would Terry Don Phillips be interested in the job?

I have no idea, but Terry Don is at or near 70 years old. He might be over 70. I’m not sure we’d want to bring in someone that age to start over. FWIW, I understand his divorce was quite bitter & his ex-wife’s family is (or was) very involved in the A.D. Finally, didn’t Terry Don retire at Clemson? If so, I doubt he’s interested. If not, I doubt he’s interested. I guess I just don’t see Terry Don as A.D. here.

Terry Don is retired. I do not think he wants to work any more.

He must be beloved. His name is mentioned by someone every time anything AD related comes up.

Consider a friend and very good int he role that he has served Arkansas.

But if they make a change at AD, I don’t see it going to anyone who hasn’t been one - and a successful one at that.

Can someone explain why they would make a change at AD? Is this all about football? Surely not. With the fan base, maybe…probably. But the BOT? There’s more to the job of AD than hiring a football coach.

I would like an explanation on this also. It makes no sense to me at all as to why Long is in trouble. The athletic department from what I see is in great shape except wins and losses in the football program. Bielema was a shockingly good hire at the time. Sure, it hasn’t turned out so well. But really, up until Missouri and Va Tech last year, the program was generally trending upward in wins and losses. I really don’t get it.

As best I can figure out, at the time that Broyles retired there were two rival factions of UA boosters, the Broyles crowd and the Malzahnistas. Long sent them to an artic weather outpost, metaphorically, and the boosters have lied in the weeds waiting for a chance to strike.

The continuing whining about the $160M stadium expansion and a less-than-inspiring trend with the football program is giving them reason to dust off their lil’ black book and make some calls.

What seems to have changed, permanently, in the past decade: the BOT and the university as a whole are aspiring towards bigger goals. UA is a solid academic institution with aspirations for even bigger things. Athletics cannot siphon off too much cash that could go to the endowment or capital projects on the Hill if that bigger vision is to happen. UA, already rather unique in not taking state funding for athletics, wants the capital outlay for athletics to produce a bonus for the university. Right now, the construction project diverts attention not to greatness but to a scuffling football program.

If Jeff Long were to leave we would lose one of the top AD’s in the country. He has been a great ambassador for the Hogs through his time on the Playoff committee. He has upgraded our facilities beyond anything we could have imagined. Outside of football, all of our athletic teams rank at or near the top in the SEC. Now, if he could just figure out a better way to get the cars out of Lot 56 after games…