At least for now, no news is good news for two prominent members of the Arkansas athletic department.
According to multiple media outlets, the University of Arkansas’ Board of Trustees went into executive session at 8:45 local time Thursday morning. The closed-door meeting was triggered by the lackluster performance of the athletic department under Jeff Long in general and the football program under Bret Bielema specifically.
After nearly three-and-a-half fours, the session ended, with the board taking no action against either Bielema or Long.
While this serves as a reprieve of sorts, it’s likely that their collective statuses will again be discussed at the end of the regular season.
Bielema was on the hot seat entering the 2017 season according to most observers, and the first three-quarters of the year haven’t really silenced such talk.
Through nine games, the Razorbacks sit at 4-5 overall and 1-4, in last place alone, in the SEC West. In nearly five full seasons in Fayetteville, Bielema is 29-31 overall and 11-26 in conference play. They haven’t finished any better than third (2015) in the West — they’ve been seventh twice and fifth once — and they are just 9-19 against divisional foes; take away a 4-2 West mark in 2015, and that record drops to 5-17.
Th meeting came five days after Arkansas nearly lost to one-win Coastal Carolina in Fayetteville, trailing by 13 points early in the fourth quarter before coming from behind for its second straight one-point win.