The Arkansas Razorbacks men’s basketball team returned home after their 1 point win against Georgia Tech on the road. Their home game against Northern Kentucky (5-2) had a very good crowd in the arena and it kinda had that feeling of some magic returning to Bud Walton Arena. The game did not start out very well for the hogs as they struggled form the floor. Mason Jones did not play in this game due to a shoulder injury so there would have to be some points coming from other areas to fill in the void. Arkansas ended the first half on a very good run to take the lead before the horn and they went into the locker room with a 33-28 lead.
Into the second half every now and again it seemed that Arkansas was going to start pulling away, having a 12 point lead at one point midway thru the half. Northern Kentucky would bring it back to within 2 points late and Adrio Bailey would get a good rebound and get fouled to put the hogs up by 4 points. In the end the hogs would escape Nolan Richardson Court with a W 66-60. The hogs move to 7-0 on the season and their next game will be against Austin Peay Governors (3-3) at home at 7:00 p.m. December the 3rd.
Stat leaders Vs. Northern Kentucky:
Pts – Jimmy Whitt Jr. (24)
Ast – J. Harris, R. Chaney (5)
Reb – R. Chaney (11)
COACHING CAROUSEL 2.0
ONLY A RUMOR THUS FAR: There is a report circulating about USC having moved on from Clay Helton, however this has not been confirmed or denied as of yet.
Coaching changes that have taken effect are
South Florida: Dan Wolken has reported that Charlie Strong will not return as their head coach next season. Since leaving Louisville for Texas, Strong has went 37-37 in his stints at Texas and South Florida after going 37-15 at Louisville.
UTSA: UTSA fired their head coach Frank Wilson after 4 seasons, Wilson went 19-29 overall but expect him to land on his feet really quickly as he has been noted as a very good recruiter in the South.
Missouri: Missouri fired Barry Odom after this season where he ended the season beating the Razorbacks in Little Rock 24-14. He went 25-25 overall, expect someone to pick up Barry Odom as a defensive coordinator if no head coaching jobs become available for him. (He does have connections with some coaches in the running for the Razorbacks job).
Rutgers: Chris Ash was fired by Rutgers earlier in the season and his replacement has been rumored for a while (see hiring rumors below)
NEW REPORT!!! – Rutgers have agreed to have Greg Schiano return as their head coach. Schiano signs a 8 year, 32 million dollar deal to return to Rutgers where he coached for 11 years and had their best season in 2006 when the Scarlet Knights wen 11-2
New Mexico: Bob Davie and New Mexico have decided to part ways, the 65 year old struggled this year at the helm after going 2-9 this season 0-7 in conference.
UNLV: Tony Sanchez was fired after going 19-40 in his career there.
Joe Moorhead will return as head coach with the Mississippi State Bulldogs for next season. According to reports, the victory against Ole Miss helped his cause for return.
Kevin Sumlin set to return to Arizonas sidelines next season. After going 4-8 this season Sumlin has been unable to do very well in the desert but their AD has said dismissing him is not something they intend to do.
Will Muschamp is expected to be the head coach at South Carolina next season.
RAZORBACKS HEAD COACHING SEARCH:
The head coaching search for the head hog in NW Arkansas are still underway. There have been some speculation that sometime in mid next week we will have an answer as to who it may be. One name that we can cross of that list now that Auburn has won the Iron Bowl is Gus Malzahn. If they would have lost to Alabama there would have been a chance that they would have moved on from Gus in another direction and Arkansas would swoop in and take him. Don’t expect that to happen now.
Lane Kiffin and his team is going to a conference championship again as Florida Atlantic moves to 9-3 on the season. Between them making the conference championship and Lane Kiffen being Lane Kiffin, he could jump ship and go ahead and take the Razorbacks job but as of right now there is no reports out there.
Mike Leach is still out there as a possibility, he was very vocal to a reporter after losing the Apple Cup for a 7th straight season but everything is looking like he will return again to Washington State. Many fans said that they did not like how he responded to the reporter on twitter but those are a lot of the fans that said Chad Morris’ post game transcript style presser was not enjoyable at all. I mean the man was 4-18 so there really wasn’t much to say anyway.
Justin Fuente is a hot name right now even after losing to Virginia. As mentioned before Barry Odom worked with a coach that is in the Arkansas rumor mill and that is Fuente. Both worked together at Memphis and it is believed that if Fuente were to get the head hog position that Odom could very likely have a reunion and become the new defensive coordinator. If that were the case he would have to help Fuente avoid another season like this one on the defensive side of the ball where Arkansas reached historic lows this year. I really like this hire if it were to take place.
Matt Cambell was reportedly linked to the hogs job last week and it was thought that he was the go to guy at that point. Those rumors have died down substantially but it still is possible that this could be just the calm before the next storm of reports. I don’t think the hogs will go this way but I have definitely been wrong plenty of times in my life and do not claim that I have so called “sources” to attach to my information.
My rankings out of the candidates mentioned:
1. Justin Fuente
2. Mike Leach
3. Lane Kiffin
4. Matt Cambell
130. Gus Malzahn
Thank you for reading and if you have any questions or comments please let me know!!!
WPS!!! GO HOGS!!!