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UA, UT have similar coaching carousel

by Nate Allen | September 11, 2021 at 1:00 a.m.

FAYETTEVILLE -- Since their 2014 last clash the Arkansas Razorbacks and Texas Longhorns keep optimistically turning corners crashed into brick walls.

One will crash into that wall again tonight, though with more than ample 2021 time for the loser possibly to recover and the winner again to become disgruntled with its coach.

Disgruntlement following brief optimism seems the recent Arkansas and Texas norm.

Arkansas since Bobby Petrino April Fool's Day 2012 crashed his motorcycle is on its fourth head football coach.

Five if you 2019 include Barry Lunney interim completing Chad Morris' second SEC winless/2-10 overall season.

Since running off former national champion coach Mack Brown, the Longhorns operate under their third nationally hottest coaching candidate. They canned the last two.

Under new vs. recently new management, 15th-ranked Texas and Arkansas clash tonight at a standing room only Reynolds Razorback Stadium.

It marks their fifth nonconference meeting since they were often nationally acclaimed rivals in the bygone Southwest Conference.

They should meet soon within the SEC once Texas fulfills its Big 12 contracts.

At least one of these two teams rode high into the 1999 Hogs and 'Horns Cotton Bowl clash and autumn games in Austin and Fayetteville in 2003 and 2004 and Austin in 2008.

Just breaking even in 2014 but still living off their storied SWC rivalry, the 6-6 Razorbacks of then second-year coach Bret Bielema and 6-6 Longhorns under then first-year post Louisville hot commodity Charlie Strong matched in the Houston Bowl.

Arkansas romped 31-7.

Arkansas Athletic Director Jeff Long rewarded Bielema a lavish buyout in his contract.

By November, 2017, Arkansas canned Long and Bielema, Long in part because of the Bielema buyout.

Sam Pittman, Bielema's 2013-2015 offensive line coach, as 2020 debuting head coach started righting Arkansas ship. A 3-7 SEC record sounds meager until contrasted to his immediate predecessors' 1-7, 0-8, 0-8.

Most saw progress though social media snarked as Pittman's Hogs last Saturday trailed 19-point underdog Rice, 17-7 before winning, 38-17.

Firing Strong, the Longhorns false-started "Texas is back" when hot commodity Tom Herman, the former Ohio State offensive coordinator and former Houston Cougars head coach, piloted the 2018 Longhorns to a Sugar Bowl upset over No. 5 Georgia.

Soon off "Texas is back" Texas backed off Herman. He was fired post a 7-3 2020 despite winning 5 of his last 6.

Steve Sarkisian, the Alabama offensive coordinator play-calling the Tide's 2020 national champion juggernaut, head coaches the 'Horns as their latest hot commodity. Last week Texas beat Louisiana-Lafayette, then nationally 23rd yet still a football fans no-name.

Big names clash traditionally tonight.

Fayetteville's Dickson Street will toast Pittman into the wee hours if Arkansas wins.

Sarkisian will be Austin honored if the UT Tower postgame victoriously glows burnt orange.

Yet the winner's joy could prove short term.

As reflected by fates of victorious yet fired coaches of Arkansas and Texas past, some forget those victories supposedly unforgettable.

Print Headline: UA, UT have similar coaching carousel

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