LITTLE ROCK -- Tim Horton will have to adjust quickly to his
new job as Arkansas' running backs coach -- the season starts in
about six weeks.
"Coach Nutt said [we] had a couple of pretty good lettermen
coming back at running back," Horton said.
Horton was introduced Wednesday as the newest member of the
Razorbacks' staff, replacing Danny Nutt, who stepped down for
health reasons. Nutt, the younger brother of Arkansas head coach
Houston Nutt, has experienced a recurrence of bleeding from his
Horton was hired as Air Force's offensive coordinator and wide
receivers coach earlier this year, but he'll now return to
Arkansas. Although Horton once played for the Razorbacks, the move
is difficult for him because of Danny Nutt's condition.
"Obviously, to come at this time of the year and to come under
these circumstances is less than ideal," Horton said. "With Danny
Nutt's health being like it is and him being a friend, there's
things more important than football out there."
Horton inherits perhaps the nation's best group of running
backs. McFadden and Jones both rushed for more than 1,000 yards as
sophomores last season, with McFadden finishing second in the
Heisman Trophy voting. Fullback Peyton Hillis is a dependable
blocker and pass catcher.
Arkansas went 10-4 last season and finished with a No. 15
Horton will try to be up to speed by the time the Razorbacks
start practice the first week of August. They open the season
against Troy on Sept. 1.
"I've been doing some cramming," Horton said. "There's going
to be a learning curve for me."
Horton was the running backs coach at Kansas State in 2006.
Before that, he was at Air Force for a first tour of duty from
1999-2005, coaching receivers for six years and running backs for
Horton began coaching at Appalachian State in 1990. He was a
receiver at Arkansas from 1986-89.
"We are excited to add a former Razorback and another
outstanding coach to our staff," Houston Nutt said in a statement.
"He was in a great position as offensive coordinator at Air Force
and so we knew it would be extremely tough to convince him to join
us especially this close to the upcoming season. I know he is
excited to be back home and we are fortunate that he is once again
a part of our program."
Horton's father, Harold Horton, is a vice president of the
Razorback Foundation, the school's private fundraising arm. Tim
Horton went to Conway High School, and he said his family's ties to
Arkansas were a major factor in convincing him to return.
Horton said he hasn't been back much since his playing days, but
he's looking forward to coaching in the Southeastern Conference --
even if it means giving up a chance to be an offensive coordinator
"When you leave a position of leadership, and to come this late
in the game, it was very, very difficult," Horton said. "Troy
Calhoun, the new head football coach [at Air Force], was great to
"I'm here because of family," Horton continued. "My mom and
dad live here. My sister lives here. My wife Lauren's from
The Razorbacks' coaching staff will have a new look in 2007.
Offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn left in January for Tulsa and was
replaced by David Lee; Alex Wood went from quarterbacks to
receivers coach; defensive backs coach Louis Campbell is becoming
an assistant athletic director; and Chris Vaughn is moving from
on-campus recruiting director to safeties coach.