Discussion

Arkansas' Petrino replacement options

Updated: April 10, 2012, 10:42 PM ET
By Travis Haney

Bobby Petrino lied to his boss and had an inappropriate relationship with a 25-year-old woman that he had recently hired over 158 other applicants.

Just like that, in a week's time, the Arkansas Razorbacks -- and especially AD Jeff Long -- are in a tricky spot. They need a head football coach. And they're looking for one in April.

Long has said he will immediately begin a search. If he does not find a long-term solution in the coming weeks, he added that he is not afraid to have an interim coach lead the Razorbacks in 2012. Linebackers coach Taver Johnson, a former Ohio State assistant who was hired in the offseason, will serve as the interim coach for at least the remainder of the spring.

While Long's task is challenging, it's important to point out that this job isn't like, say, North Carolina or Ohio State -- or USC -- where sanctions, and potentially hefty ones, were imminent at the times new hires were being made. No coach is walking in the door with the expectation of the NCAA's hammer coming down.

No, this is a relevant national job with big possibilities, which Petrino had started to mine (a BCS appearance two seasons ago and an 11-2 campaign last season).

Here are some potential candidates to replace Petrino (listed in alphabetical order):

Butch Davis

Current position: Free agent
Age: 60

Davis, a 1973 Arkansas graduate, has internal support from some prominent players in the university's machine, but he is a complicated candidate.

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