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Craziness in Tulsa Job Search Almost Feels Like Divine Intervention

All Hogs
All Hogs
 2022-12-04

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Insane chain of events clear way to view Arkansas defensive coordinator Barry Odom as the top candidate for Golden Hurricanes

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – No one will know other than a handful of people if Arkansas defensive coordinator Barry Odom is the top target at Tulsa, but it certainly looks like he might be God's.

What is going on in the coaching search over at Tulsa looks like a divine parting of the seas for either Odom or Texas wide receivers coach Brennan Marion to take the reins.

The Tulsa World reported Saturday night that former Texas Tech and Utah State head coach Matt Wells, who currently serves as an analyst for the Oklahoma staff, has removed his name from consideration for the position.

In an additional move that would be thought of as too over the top if it were written in a movie, interim Nebraska coach Mickey Joseph interviewed for the position over computer on Wednesday and then was arrested shortly afterward for allegedly punching and strangling a woman in his Lincoln home.

That seemingly cleared the way for G.J. Kinne, one of the most successful Tulsa quarterbacks of all time, to return to alma mater once he wraps up leading Incarnate Word through the FCS playoffs.

Then, on Thursday, word came down that Kinne, who grew up playing football for his father in Texas, decided to stay closer to his childhood home to coach Texas State.

Now, the only two names known to be of prime interest to Tulsa left are Odom and Marion.

Of the two, Odom, who reportedly interviewed via Zoom on Wednesday also, would be the favorite on paper. He has head SEC coaching experience, is already living close enough to commute if needed, has numerous years recruiting the area and grew up a shade over two hours south of Tulsa in Ada.

Marion has no head coaching experience other than high school and grew up in Pennsylvania. His only experience as a coordinator came at Howard and William and Mary, neither job lasting more than a single season.

Other than the fact Marion played football at Tulsa, there is no edge to be had should Odom decide he truly wants the job.

The one thing working in the Razorbacks' favor is time.

Now, not every educational institution is a bastion of classical knowledge so who knows what time table Tulsa administrators are working with, but logic says if a new coach is going to be named, it needs to happen no later than Sunday afternoon.

That's because the transfer portal officially opens Monday and the new coach needs time to frantically try to convince the list of Golden Hurricane players who intend to enter to wait until he at least gets a chance to speak with them in private.

Hesitancy could spell disaster for Tulsa and make it nearly impossible to bring on a highly qualified new coach since quarterbacks Braylon Braxton and Davis Brin have each declared their intention to leave.

Brin threw for 2,138 yards and 17 touchdowns this past season, while Braxton, a highly touted freshman, threw for 1,133 yards and 10 touchdowns with only two interceptions.

Both are expected to be highly sought should either formally become an option for other teams. Failure to keep at least one would have an immediate effect on maintaining the rest of the roster and holding together the recruiting class.

Of course, such a necessary move would leave Arkansas vulnerable. Without its defensive coordinator hours before the portal opens and only two weeks before the Hogs sign their next recruiting class, schools would start swarming players and recruits like lawyers after a car wreck.

Pittman will suddenly find himself divided between trying to keep players, holding together a recruiting class, combing the transfer portal and attempting to lure a new defensive coordinator without his right hand man to help.

There's little doubt the seas have been parted.

Now everyone just has to sit and wait to see whether Odom is the man who is going to walk through to the other side.

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