You know...I just refuse to melt down over this coaching thing

This age we live in is wonderful in many ways; but it’s got it’s pros and cons.

A specific example is boards like this (and every team has them). Coaches have been hired, fired and/or left on their own for decades. Back in the day, we’d just get a story in the news paper one day advising us of the change, have our cup of coffee, and go to work. We had no way to get “real time” information about what might be happening.

Today, we do. And while that does enable the facilitation and distribution of valid news in a way we never had before, it also is like cocaine for millions of junkies who didn’t even know they had a habit until 15 years ago (when these boards popped up).

I get that this search has not appeared to have gone as planned. But whose to say that, for example, the search for Eddie Sutton or Nolan went “as planned”? Maybe someone (or 2 or 3 someones) told us “no” before we hired those guys - we were just blissfully unaware of it.

I also think the value of a “name” coach is way, WAY overblown most times. It’s kind of like recruiting…fans love to puff their chest and boast about how their school signed Billy Five-Star and your school didn’t. In the same way, having a “Name” coach temporarily makes Joe Alumni feel “better” than his buddy who went to a rival school. But “Name” coaches don’t always perform the best, just like 5 stars don’t always make All American football players, and first round draft picks end up as busts.

After the PC announcing the new coach, what REALLY matters is how he relates to and commands respect from the players (and the staff he assembles) on a day-to-day basis. How organized he is both in leading the team and in recruiting, how effective he is as a recruiter, etc. Look at Jimbo at A&M…BIG name, but he’s also under BIG pressure to win BIG, and so far he has not. On the other hand, who knew who Dabo Swinney was when Clemson hired him?

I’m not a Pollyanna…I know our football program is at a critical juncture. But I’m also just not convinced that we HAVE to have a BIG NAME coach come in or else we’re doomed. I’m just not. It’s about getting the RIGHT coach.

Morris was not. He COULD recruit, and that’s very important. But he failed at the rest. I remember meeting him for the first time at the Greater Dallas Razorback Club Spring Rally in 2018, shortly after he was hired. During the mixer, prior to his speech, I found myself standing next to him and we had a brief private conversation in which I offered him support and wished him well, etc. I left that conversation with grave reservations, however. Oh, he was a very nice fellow…he just had no charisma - no “it” factor that would inspire young football players to perform for him, IMO. I’ve met many of our past coaches, and even the lesser successful ones had that quality of commanding attention when they walked into the room. I didn’t get that, at all, from Chad. I had no choice but to hope I was wrong. However, I cannot say I’m surprised by the results of the last 2 years.

I was never for hiring Kiffin - I know many of you were. We’ll see how he does at Ole Miss. My personal feeling is that he’s an elite offensive mind/play-caller, but not a guy who will lead anyone to a National Championship (or, an SEC Championship). He’s a “Name” people know, but that cuts both ways. And there IS a risk factor with him that’s higher (based on what I know, which is admittedly not as much as someone actually hiring him should know) than I am comfortable with.

I was trying to come around on Kiffin, because I thought there was a good chance we would end up hiring him. And I’ll give the benefit of the doubt to anyone we hire, whether they were my preference, or not. But I will admit that I’m relieved we didn’t hire him. I may regret that in a few years - we’ll see. But right now, that’s the way I feel.

You guys can dismiss me as an old fool, or in whatever other manner you’d like to…but I still feel like something good is going to come out of this hire. I don’t think ANYONE is going to be able to effect a quick fix on our program - it’s going to take some time. And, as long as progress is being made, I believe our next coach will get that time.

I’m as anxious as anyone else to find out who it will be and start the process of moving forward. And I’m aware of how critical the time frame is with the new recruiting signing dates. But I think we’re going to be happy with our new coach, IF we don’t have unrealistic expectations for him and simply give him a chance.


Fact of the matter is, whether we hire Urban Meyer or Butch Davis or Eliah Drinkwitz, we’re not going to know if this was a good hire for two or three years. Chad Morris had to really screw up to get canned after 22 games. I expect the new HC, whoever he is, will get a bit more rope than that.

I have some preferences, based on what little I know, but I also recognize that I do know very little about the candidates. So I’ll see who they hire and see how he does. I don’t expect the new guy to do what HDN did in '98, but I’d be thrilled if he does.

I have no idea who should be the next coach.

But, when the ones who are picking the coach, have went through 3 weeks of analysis, vetting and picked the list and get outbid or “out maneuvered” by Ole Miss and Miz.

You have a major problem.

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Good post Wiz! I think your post reflects the thoughts of A LOT of us Hog fans that don’t post much.

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Nice post Wizard, I think Ole Miss actually did us a favor.
I agree with your Dabo analogy, the next great coach has to come from somewhere.
If Drinkwitz is our next coach at least he knows Arkansas pride and would really want the job.

HY made a good hire in Muss so let’s just see who we end up with and trust HY knows what he is doing. The biggest concerns I would have is what type of staff do we end up with, how many of the good players we currently have can we retain and how well Drinkwitz and his staff can recruit.

We should know something soon I hope.
Woo Pig

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Great post Wiz. I feel just about the same as you.

Thanks for the wise words!

I feel lucky in that I can sit back semi-patiently, and let this process play out without the undue stress many appear to be experiencing…I mean it’s going to, no matter what I do or say.

I don’t know that grave mistakes have been made by our AD, so I choose to give him the benefit of the doubt. I honestly expect an announcement very soon that will come out of left field, (or is it right field?) and the majority of us crazy folks will be content, if not down right happy.

I will say I am ready!


Wizard, your post was the second one today that i really liked. the other one was Votan called Rock Botton… It was what his grandpa use to say. , it was sso funny, It was about being lucky, like,… sticking your hand in a bucket of ---- and finding a gold nugget. Thats call luck… But Votan said that if he if he stuck his hand in a bucket of gold that he would come out with a turd… and that would be his luck…Lets hope that we find a good coach and not have votan luck,

ok ok oknone

How do you know we got “out maneuvered” by OM? I haven’t even seen any credible report we even offered Kiffin. There’s no doubt we, and perhaps HY, was interested in him, but beyond that, we know nothing. You can bet Jimmy Sexton did everything he could to make both OM & Ark think the other badly wanted him. You can also bet he did everything he could to pitch LK to both schools and maybe to MU.

Like Wiz, I didn’t really want Kiffin. Once he became rumored to be the most likely choice, I successfully talked myself into being glad.

I won’t quote Wiz’s post, but you ought to re-read it. It’s exactly on point & what we all need to realize. He nailed it.

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Well said, Dave. In the “olden” days, things were debated over coffee or at the barber shop. But they would not have known who did or did not turn down an opportunity to coach.

Today there is just way to much information, and no way to verify how accurate that information is.


Very good perspective, but this search is still a crap show

Too many reports nationally that LK was the main target for Arkansas.

I can list them for you if you really want me to, but just google Lane Kiffin to Arkansas.

Was that a ploy by Sexton to drive the price up at Ole Miss? Possibly.

Again my issue is that if the powers that be have identified the coach and someone else comes in at the last minute and out bids us, that is a major problem.

You would have to concede that since we do not have a coach named after 3 weeks this is probably a likely scenario.

Super great, insightful post.

I agree with every word.

And…Drinkwitz, Clark, or Fritz would all be good hires. I haven’t heard Fuente mentioned for awhile. He would have been a good hire too.

A home run hire would be Harsin. I have loved watching Boise State over the years. They’ve been a team I go out of my way to watch and pull for. Like Gonzaga in hoops. He would be a FANTASTIC hire. Proven winner.

This is likely to be the new normal going forward and not just for Arkansas unless we have prospects to hire from internally.

“Too many reports” aren’t credible sources. They’re rumors that get repeated.

I have no doubt we looked at LK, but I’m not at all certain we didn’t let him go, either. If we did that, there’s

I’m not getting bent out of shape on the this football coach search. I’m just having fun with the thing. I’m not the live or die with the football team kind of guy anymore, used to be a long time ago.

Good post Wiz…thanks!

I’m with you…

True. But here are facts.

  1. We have been conducting a coaching search for 3 weeks.
  2. If our number 1 target was not coaching yesterday, we would have already hired them so they could be assembling a staff and recruiting.
  3. So that leaves the coaches from yesterday.

Novell was never coming here. FSU had him locked up early.
I still believe LK was our #1 choice until Ole Miss fired the coach. I think there was a verbal agreement in place but no “formal” offer.
I think ED is our second choice and since no announcement has been made, likely negotiations are going on and it’s being reported Miz is in play.

I don’t know who the coach should be. I do think this is an important hire for the future of the program over the next 10 years.

My point is that if you think you have identified “your guy” you should over pay if you have to. You have to make him say no to an extra million $$.

Did that happen? Nobody knows but I suspect it didn’t happen.

There is a reason rich guys have super model girlfriends.