According to Football Scoop — which keeps a pretty consistent ear to the ground on coaching job searches — Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long is “very interested” in speaking with Nebraska coach Bo Pelini about its open head coaching vacancy.
From the post:
“A source with knowledge of the search tells me that Jeff Long is very interested in speaking with Bo Pelini about his interest in the job.
“I don’t have a dog in this hunt and am simply relaying information; but for a lot of reasons I could see Pelini to Arkansas happening; and truthfully I think he would be successful there. He has learned a lot about how to handle the pressure of a large ‘engaged’ fan base over the past few years in Lincoln and he knows his way around the SEC.”
Note: This is not Pelini’s interest. This is Arkansas’ interest.
In April, Long fired Razorback coach Bobby Petrino — who had led the team to Sugar and Cotton Bowls in 2010 and 2011 — after Petrino admitted he misled Long and the fan base about whether he’d been alone when he crashed his motorcycle. Petrino had actually been riding with his 25-year-old mistress, whom he’d just hired for a job in the Arkansas football office. Petrino’s predecessor, Houston Nutt, had to endure allegations of an affairs with a local TV reporter.
After practice, when asked by the World-Herald about the Football Scoop report, Pelini said, “I don’t know anything about that.” He also said that the Razorbacks have a coach — interim John L. Smith — who replaced Petrino before the season.
There’s another report from National Football Post that suggests Auburn — which may or may not fire Gene Chizik — should contact Pelini if there is a vacancy. That article cites a conversation the author had with a “Big Ten observer” over the summer about Pelini’s desire to take a “bigger job.” In other words, it’s a recommendation based on the statement of an “observer,” which could mean a media member.