Razorbacks Report:

Coaches remember interview

By: Bob Holt , Tom Murphy
Published: Thursday, November 8, 2018
Arkansas coach Chad Morris encourages players during the fourth quarter of a game against Vanderbilt on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Fayetteville.
Photo by Ben Goff
Arkansas coach Chad Morris encourages players during the fourth quarter of a game against Vanderbilt on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Fayetteville.

FAYETTEVILLE -- University of Arkansas Coach Chad Morris had an interesting interview with then-Ole Miss Coach Ed Orgeron for a job back in the winter of 2006-07.

Jevan Snead, who had played quarterback for Morris at Stephenville (Texas) High School, had decided to transfer from the University of Texas and was making a recruiting visit to Oxford, Miss. Snead visited the Ole Miss campus on a Friday and thought he liked what was available, so he called Morris and asked him to check it out. Morris flew into the area the next day and wound up interviewing for an open position on offense to coach either the receivers or the tight ends.

"I interviewed him at the Waffle House in Oxford," Orgeron said on Wednesday's SEC teleconference. "I ended up hiring Hugh Freeze instead."

Freeze, who had been tight ends coach for the Rebels in 2006, transitioned to wide receivers coach in 2007 and would eventually take over as head coach in 2012 after his year as head coach at Arkansas State University.

Orgeron might have a faulty memory on the location however, since there isn't a Waffle House in Oxford, but there is a Huddle House.

"Might have been the Huddle House then," Morris said Wednesday afternoon.

"I actually ended up at his house as well. ... Jevan went on an official visit up there and called me and said, 'Coach, I need you to come up here.' I got on a plane and flew up there and went through the rest of the official visit with him.

"I went to an interview with Coach Orgeron and the whole bit. I did wind up having another follow-up interview at the ACA Convention down in San Antonio."

Morris was asked about not getting the job.

"I remind him of that every now and then when I see him that he didn't hire me," Morris said, laughing. "So he said, 'It worked out pretty good anyway.' It's all good."

Personnel update

Dre Greenlaw (ankle) was still in a green limited-contact jersey on Wednesday, along with defensive tackle Briston Guidry (knee) and receiver De'Vion Warren (ankle), while receiver Jared Cornelius (ankle) and defensive back Kevin Richardson (ankle) were out of green jerseys.

"I thought they moved around well," Coach Chad Morris said of Greenlaw and Cornelius. "I anticipate them being back and better today than yesterday. These guys should be a full go and ready for Saturday."

Tailback Devwah Whaley (ankle) is doubtful for a Saturday return, meaning Rakeem Boyd and Chase Hayden would continue to be the top two options at running back.

More biscuit

Arkansas safety Santos Ramirez brought out a biscuit analogy on Tuesday about fighting LSU for food on the table, and the biscuit stories kept rolling Wednesday.

ESPN senior writer Ryan McGee, speaking at the Northwest Arkansas Touchdown Club, brought out one of his best Chad Morris stories, which revolved around a question he asked all 14 SEC coaches on the Marty and McGee show on the SEC Network this summer.

The question: Do you prefer biscuits or cornbread?

McGee said Morris gave a thoughtful pause before going with biscuits.

"I'll never forget how serious Chad Morris was about that," McGee said. "Like just sitting there and thinking about it. ... He said a good biscuit is like a five-star recruit. What you're looking for is consistency and versatility."

Dalton departing

Arkansas Coach Chad Morris said defensive back Nate Dalton is not with the team now.

"He's chosen to step back and focus on his academics," Morris said on Wednesday.

Dalton drew Morris' ire during the Razorbacks' 23-0 victory over Tulsa when he slapped Golden Hurricane punt returner Jarion Anderson after a fair catch at the 10-yard line. The unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against Dalton moved the ball to the 25.

Dalton went to the sideline and straight to the Arkansas locker room on Morris' orders that day.

Dancing Broyles

ESPN senior writer Ryan McGee, speaking at the Northwest Arkansas Touchdown Club, said his father Jerry, a long-time college football official, told him many great stories from over the years, including one that featured legendary Arkansas football coach and athletic director Frank Broyles.

Jerry McGee was assigned to work the 2008 Cotton Bowl, at which Arkansas under interim Coach Reggie Herring faced highly regarded Missouri.

According to Ryan McGee, his father went out the night before the game with a large party that included Broyles and long-time Baylor Coach Grant Teaff to an event in Dallas that included square dancing. McGee read a text to the audience sent by his father on Tuesday, the night before he spoke to the club.

"Frank Broyles was a dancing machine," the text read. "I got tired and sat down and so did Grant Teaff. Coach Broyles was happy to dance with everyone's wives."

McGee said he asked his father if he was sure about that because Broyles would have been 80 years old at the time.

"Yeah, but on the dance floor he was 22," McGee said his father wrote.

SEC power ranks

LSU was easily the highest-ranked two-loss team in the nation at No. 7 in Tuesday night's release of the second College Football Playoff rankings.

The Tigers remained ahead of three one-loss teams from other Power 5 conferences: No. 8 Washington State, No. 9 West Virginia and No. 10 Ohio State. The next-highest two-loss team was No. 11 Kentucky, also of the SEC, followed by No. 13 Syracuse of the ACC.

The SEC has the nation's top-ranked unbeaten in No. 1 Alabama, the second-highest ranked one-loss team in No. 5 Georgia (behind No. 4 Michigan), and the highest-ranked three-loss teams in No. 15 Florida and No. 16 Mississippi State.

Road facts

LSU will be playing its first road game in more than a month on Saturday. The Tigers have not played away from Tiger Stadium since a 27-19 setback at Florida on Oct. 6, which was LSU's first loss of the season.

Arkansas has been on an even longer home stretch. The Razorbacks haven't played out of the state since a 24-17 loss to Texas A&M on Sept. 29, and they haven't played a true road game since falling 34-3 in their SEC opener at Auburn on Sept. 22.

The Hogs are 1-3 on their five-game homestand, including a 37-33 setback against Ole Miss in Little Rock.

Of LSU interest

The Tigers have allowed one first-quarter touchdown all season and it came last week when Alabama's Henry Ruggs caught a 15-yard scoring pass from Tua Tagovailoa.

LSU leads the nation in victories over top 25 teams (4) and victories over top 10 teams (3). The Tigers have three victories over top 10 teams in the regular season for the third time (1982, 2011).

LSU clinched bowl eligibility for the 19th consecutive season with its 36-16 victory over No. 2 Georgia on Oct. 13.

The Tigers have won 19 consecutive SEC games when scoring at least 20 points.

Arkansas and Rice are the only teams with losing records on LSU's schedule.

Sports on 11/08/2018


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