Arkansas expected to hire Chad Morris away from SMU

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Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables, also contacted by Arkansas as a head coaching possibility, worked three years with Morris on the same Clemson staff under Dabo Swinney.

Numerous media outlets, including USA TODAY and the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, report SMU head football coach Chad Morris is being targeted to take the same position with the University of Arkansas.

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Morris successfully rebuilt SMU in his three seasons with the program. He went 2-10 in his first season with a program that had won just one in the previous season and improved to 5-7 in 2016.

Hunter Yurachek was named Arkansas new athletic director on Monday, so it makes sense the search for a football coach will ramp up now. He served as Clemson's offensive coordinator from 2011-14 before taking over as head coach of the Mustangs.

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The Mustangs are top 15 in the FBS in scoring offense (40.2 points per game), total offense (493.8 yards per game) and passing offense (308 yards per game) this year. Long was the man who hired Bielema away from Wisconsin following the 2012 regular season in what was considered a major coup for the Razorbacks at the time. So Morris will be bringing his system to the SEC, in an effort to revive the Razorbacks' program after a mostly disappointing five-year run (29-34 record) under Bielema. Bielema was unceremoniously fired on his way off the field after Arkansas' loss to Missouri in their season finale. But Arkansas could not lure Malzahn, who led Auburn to an SEC West title this season, home. However, Norvell Tuesday signed a $13 million extension to his contract at Memphis through 2022.

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