SDS down to 2

Norvell or Venables. Which makes the most sense. I am leaning Venables because I would like a defense that not Big12 like. Thoughts?


I have been hopeful for Venables since all of this started. He has a lot of experience on defense, has recruited Texas and Oklahoma extensively, has worked under 2 national championship coaches in Stoops and Swinney, and is experienced enough success not to be considered an “up and comer”. He does not have head coaching experience but I believe he has enough overall experience to be successful.

I say Veneables. We need a defensive overhaul.

But, I don’t suspect Veneables is a real option.

SDS rarely reports anything itself. They’re quoting this report from

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Prefer Norvell but think Veneables would be a good hire.

Norvell with a budget to hire a top notch DC

The thing about Arkansas is you need someone that makes you interesting. You need someone who makes you unique to appeal nationally to recruits.

Venables is vanilla ice cream. Good stuff but not exciting.

Norvell is mint chocolate chip, (my personal favorite) and he’s on clearance. Get him, he brings excitement, young, energetic and brilliant offense. Then use the money you save to get a good defensive staff.

He may be a bit vanilla for some but vanilla still sells a lot of ice cream and he’s got a bigger body of work in college football to judge him on. Norvell may be a bit like one of these new flavors of ice cream, like banana and salted caramel. It might be good but it hasn’t been on the shelves too long to figure it out.

Don’t think we can roll dice on a guy that’s never been an HC. Also, concerning he has interviewed for several HC gigs but never been selected.

Actually, I don’t think he has interviewed numerous times but i could be wrong on that. I thought the story on him was that he hadn’t actively pursued head coaching jobs. Look at it this way - he’s worked for two very successful coaches and both of them were promoted as a coordinator to head coach.

You do realize Brent has more 5 Star recruit’s attached to his name than Norvell has 4 Star rated.

I would like to think that Venables could be favorably compared to Kirby Smart. Same mold, same qualifications when given their first HC job.

He’s interviewed at Arkansas twice - 2007 and 2012. Supposedly interviewed at K State, Miami, and Texas Tech.

Brent Venables would be able to recruit in Texas and Oklahoma where he is already successful. He is respected and can put a good staff together. He’s the most qualified and should have been hired 6 years ago.

I think that is a good comparison.

You could be right. But Long wouldn’t need to interview him in 2012 because he already knew him and had plenty of connections to OU. And if I recall all of the post Bielema hire stories, Venables was never mentioned as a candidate because Long said he was looking for an experienced head coach. So I am going to question your source on that one. I have no idea about the others. Really, it’s besides the point though. The guy has a big body of work to judge him on from a defense and recruiting perspective, he knows Texas, and both of his last 2 bosses were successfully promoted from coordinators to national championship head coaches. I’m sure he has a couple of good blueprints to follow.

Small quibble. The only thing Dabo coordinated before Terry Don Phillips promoted him in midseason was Clemson’s recruiting. He was not the OC or DC. First thing he did, though, was fire the OC.

Yet, he has been successful. No? That’s my point. I’m not against the Norvell hire. I just prefer Venables and think he’s been around enough success to understand how they go about it. Does it mean he can do it too? Nope. Kirby Smart results? Maybe. Jim McElwain results? Maybe . Both coached for Saban. I’ll support either - just happy that the Gus Bus seems very unlikely at this point.