Matt Jones is the online sports editor for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette and Northwest Arkansas Newspapers.
Bielema hires Segrest as DL coach
Arkansas coach Bret Bielema stands on the field prior to a Nov. 29, 2013 game against LSU at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, La.
FAYETTEVILLE Arkansas has hired Rory Segrest as its new defensive line coach.
Segrest, 40, has spent the last three seasons as defensive line coach at Samford University in Birmingham, Ala. Segrest had previously spent five seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, including four years as a full-time assistant.
"We had an exceptional pool of candidates and Rory's name kept coming to the top in every category as I went through the search process," Arkansas coach Bret Bielema said in a statement. "I took notice of his coaching abilities as we prepared to play Samford this past season and they were excellent on special teams. All of the coaches I visited with spoke very highly about his abilities, including (former Eagles and current Chiefs head coach) Andy Reid. Rory brings championship experience at both the NFL and collegiate levels to our program."
Segrest played four seasons at Alabama and was a member of the Crimson Tide's 1992 national championship team. He was a graduate assistant at both Alabama and Auburn, and an assistant coach at Southeast Missouri State and Samford prior to his job with the Eagles.
After being fired at Philadelphia, he returned to Samford in 2011 as the team's defensive line coach and special teams coordinator, the titles he held there during his first stint from 2002-05 when he was also the Bulldogs' recruiting coordinator. He will replace Charlie Partridge at Arkansas after Partridge was hired as head coach at Florida Atlantic last month.
In addition to his defensive line responsibilities, Partridge also worked with the Razorbacks' special teams during his only season at Arkansas.
"Rory Segrest spent several years in the NFL and learned under the best defensive line coaches in football," Arkansas defensive coordinator Chris Ash said in an interview on Sports Talk with Bo Mattingly. "He brings a great wealth of knowledge to our program."
Bielema said earlier this week he had interviewed at least 15 candidates for the job.