Yes, coach, you most certainly are. But what people want to know is if you’ll be the coach at Arkansas State this fall.
With Bobby Petrino out at Arkansas following a cover-up of his inappropriate relationship with UA football employee Jessica Dorrell, the list of potential replacements to lead the Hogs into the future is already being formulated.
And on just about every media member’s list so far is Arkansas State coach and former Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn. As JT points out from last night “The former Auburn offensive coordinator has deep ties to the state — he graduated from high school and coached at that level there, and played football at UA for a couple of years — and will be entering his first season as a head coach at the collegiate level. It’s highly, highly likely Malzahn would have an interest in the top job at his home state’s flagship university — next year.”
But could Malzahn’s interest in the Arkansas vacancy — if there is indeed any interest to begin with — be moved up to, say, today? When asked by Mickey Ryan of 103.9 The Game in Jonesboro if he had any contact with UA, Malzahn gave the typical response.
“I’m the coach at Arkansas State. I’m not worried about anything else. I’m committed to being here.”
Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long said he would begin a search for a new head coach immediately. In the meantime, linebackers coach Taver Johnson has been assigned to lead the program on an interim basis through the end of spring.