OSG Sources close to the situation say Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long is going the interim route for the 2012.
Smart decision, now who will that interim be.
It would seem that Arkansas assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Tim Horton should Long decide to hire from within is the favorite.
If Long doesn't and goes outside the program, it wouldn't surprise me if suspended New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton gets a call.
Before you dismiss this think about it. Payton can't do anything right now football wise in the NFL and can't have contact with his team, the Saints, for a year.
By all accounts Payton is a football lifer, it's in his blood so how will he spend his time filling the void.
Arkansas fired its head football coach, Bobby Petrino, in the middle of spring football, the timing was awful.
The two parties might be very attracted to each other.
Can Payton coach Arkansas still under contract with the Saints?
The answer is maybe. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told Mike Florio at profootballtalk.com that Payton's suspension would not prevent him from taking the Arkansas job.
The language in Payton's contract with the Saints might however Saints owner Tom Benson may not have a problem with Payton keeping his coaching skills sharp in Fayetteville, Arkansas for a season. The SEC is arguably second to the NFL as far as the level of football on the field.
Jeff Long has proven if he zero's in on a candidate to fill a coaching position he will get it done. Two examples, the way Long hired Bobby Petrino in 2007 and the hiring of Mike Anderson for the men's basketball team.
Anderson left a Final Four quality team at Missouri to rebuild the Arkansas men's basketball program. The Razorback fans wanted Anderson back and Jeff Long made it happen.
That's why I don't think an arrangement with Sean Payton is as far out there as you might think. Jeff Long needs to fill the head football coach position on an interim basis. Sean Payton needs something to do to kill time while serving a suspension and a way to not be tempted to contact Joe Vitt, the Saints interim head coach, and Drew Brees.
This seems like a great idea.