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ESPN’s Gottlieb: “Arkansas Is Coming Open”

Arkansas is on the verge of a 20-win season and a #2 seed in the SEC West.  The Razorbacks have won three of their last four games and snapped a 10-game losing streak to Kentucky last week.  That all sounds pretty good.

But fans aren’t filling Bud Walton Arena and — as we’ve said hundreds of times — fans’ money is what drives coaching changes.  And one analyst believes a coaching change is indeed coming to Fayetteville.

ESPN’s Doug Gottlieb appeared on WHB-AM in Kansas City yesterday and said “Arkansas is coming open.”  He also said Missouri’s Mike Anderson will be the Hogs’ top target to replace John Pelphrey.

“Other college coaches will tell you they think Arkansas is a marquee job.  Not only is it the only job in the state, they have better players in the state (than Missouri). … Basketball is very important to them.  Everybody I know says they are going to do whatever it takes to get Anderson.  He’s turned down other prime offers before. … They want to get back to winning.  They’re embarrassed by how it’s gone.”

Anderson is a former Razorback assistant under Nolan Richardson and he runs the “40 minutes of Hell” pressing style of defense at Mizzou.

Gottlieb was also asked about the Top 10 (or Top 5, depending on the source) recruiting class that Pelphrey has headed to UA next year.  Rumors have emerged recently that several of the Hogs’ signees might have issues off the court or in the classroom or both.

“Everything you’ve heard is correct.  I’ve heard the exact same thing.  (Pelphrey is) taking a lot of questionable guys.  None of what you’ve heard is false.”

According to, Gottlieb tweeted a clarification once word of his comments hit the messageboards.

Never said ARK was open, just speculation from coaches that say they know Pell has to dance.  Stan kept his job an extra year aftr SEC run

Stan would be former Arkansas coach Stan Heath.  As for never saying Arkansas was open, okay, but Gottlieb did say it was “coming open.” 



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