Arkansas Team News

Bret Bielema fired immediately after Arkansas’ season-ending loss

Bret Bielema 2016
Nelson Chenault/USA TODAY Sports

Arkansas wasted little time firing coach Bret Bielema after the Hogs’ season ended Friday, announcing his dismissal less than an hour after a loss to Missouri.

Bielema evidently got the news a lot earlier.

“I was informed coming off the field that I am no longer the coach of Arkansas,” Bielema said after the game.

Bielema also said a coach wants “to leave the place better than when you got here and I have no doubt I did that.”

When Arkansas fired AD Jeff Long earlier this month, that essentially sealed Bielema’s fate. He was 29-34 overall and 11-29 in the SEC in his five seasons in Fayetteville.

“We have not been able to sustain the success on the field that is expected and required at the University of Arkansas,” a statement from interim AD Julie Cromer Peoples said.

Speculation will center on Auburn’s Gus Malzahn and Memphis’ Mike Norvell as potential replacements. Malzahn is an Arkansas native who is a former Razorbacks assistant, while Norvell is a Texas native with deep ties to the state of Arkansas.

Arkansas becomes the fourth SEC school with an opening, joining Florida, Ole Miss and Tennessee.

Bielema won the Big Ten three times as coach at Wisconsin. He replaced John L. Smith, who coached the Razorbacks in 2012 after Bobby Petrino was fired that summer.

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