Arkansas is losing its offensive coordinator as UAB has hired Garrick McGee as its new head coach. He replaces Neil Callaway, who never won more than five games in a season in his five years with the Blazers.
Bobby Petrino released this statement:
I want to congratulate Garrick McGee on becoming the head football coach at UAB. I have enjoyed watching Garrick progress throughout his career and I am excited to see him get this opportunity. Garrick has been with me as a player and an assistant coach and I thank him for being a big part of everything we have been able to build here at Arkansas. The guidance he has provided our offense and quarterbacks the past four seasons has been immeasurable. Garrick grew up the son of a coach and is a natural teacher and leader. He will have a solid plan for the football program at UAB and the dedication to carry it out. Garrick, Tiffany and the entire McGee family leave with my gratitude for a job well done with the Razorbacks, and best wishes for continued success at UAB.
McGee had previously interviews for head coaching jobs at Tulsa and UConn. His departure means that Arkansas will be on its third offensive coordinator of Petrino's short tenure, with Paul Petrino having left the job to go to Illinois prior to McGee's ascendance to coordinator. Given that Bobby Petrino is the ultimate mastermind behind the offense there, I don't anticipate too much of a drop off (if any).
McGee goes into a UAB program with an uncertain future. The administrators had planned on leaving the creaky, old Legion Field for a new on campus stadium in the near future, but the University of Alabama Board of Trustees recently killed those hopes citing a lack of fan support. It's a classic Catch-22 situation: the team will have trouble getting more fans without a new stadium, but it can't get the stadium without more fans.
Winning will likely solve that issue, but it's a tall task at a place that has questionable support from that board of trustees. McGee is a really sharp guy, and it will take all of his acumen to make this thing work.