Morris Fired After WKU Game

Chad Morris encourages the Razorbacks Sept. 28 during the team’s game against Texas A&M. After leading the Razorbacks for 22 games, Morris was fired Sunday after the Hogs' loss to Western Kentucky University.

Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Hunter Yurachek announced Sunday that Chad Morris has been dismissed as head football coach of the Razorbacks.

The news comes 24 hours after the Hogs were blown out by Conference USA opponent Western Kentucky, 45-19.

“I want to express my personal and professional regard to Coach Morris and thank him for his investment in the lives of our student-athletes,” Yurcheck said in a press release.

Morris had been in charge of the program since December 2017 and was in the midst of his second season at the helm of the team. He leaves Fayetteville with a 4-18 overall record. His first year in 2018 was marred by a 2-10 record, an all-time program worst and no conference wins.

The story was the same in his second year as the Hogs showed no improvement record-wise, posting a 2-8 overall record and still no conference wins at the time of Morris’ departure. 

The Morris-era was inundated with disappointing losses. In addition to falling to the Hilltoppers, who themselves lost to FCS-member Central Arkansas in their season opener, the Hogs also suffered defeats to Colorado State (34-27, Sept. 8, 2018), North Texas (44-17, Sept. 15, 2018) and San Jose State (31-24, Sept. 21, 2019). The latter two of those losses came at home for the Hogs.

The Hogs have not won a Southeastern Conference game in over two years, the last time coming on Oct. 28, 2017, under Bret Bielema when the Hogs squeaked out a 38-37 win over Ole Miss. Arkansas’ last comfortable SEC win came against Mississippi State in 2016 when the Hogs beat the ‘Dogs, 58-42.

“It is clear that we have not made the progress necessary to compete and win, especially within the Southeastern Conference,” Yurachek said. “I have no doubt that as we move forward, we will identify a head coach that will help lead our program to that benchmark.”

Yurachek announced through a press release that a national search for the next head football coach will begin immediately. Tight ends and special teams coach Barry Lunney Jr. will serve as the interim head football coach for the remainder of the 2019 football season.

Lunney is the only coach left on the staff that was with the team prior to Morris’ arrival.

The Razorbacks have two rivalry games left to play in the regular season. First, they’ll battle for ‘The Boot’ against undefeated No. 2 LSU on Nov. 23 and end the year facing Missouri on Nov. 29 in the ‘Battle Line Rivalry.’

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