This morning and this afternoon, two independent sources have told us that Arkansas AD Jeff Long has already spoken with current UAB head coach, and former Arkansas offensive coordinator, Garrick McGee about taking over as head coach at Arkansas.
Both sources told us that Long and McGee discussed keeping the existing staff intact.
The two sources we spoke with both felt that McGee would have no problem retaining Paul Petrino as offensive coordinator and both felt that Paul would stay.
McGee has his UAB team in Spring ball right now (Spring game is on the 21st). Given this timing, we expect nothing to be said publicly until UAB completes Spring ball; but both sources felt that McGee would be announced as the new head coach shortly thereafter.
Clearly this is a fluid situation; but that's what we've been told by two sources.
11PM Update> Late tonight Jeff Long took to twitter to say, "At this time I have not spoken to anyone about the Head Coaching position." Earlier this afternoon, UAB AD Brian Mackin said that he has not been contacted by anyone from the University of Arkansas seeking permission to talk to McGee about the opening. Mackin said he wouldn't comment further. Tonight, after practice, McGee declined to speak with reporters at all and the sports information staff said that he would not speak with reporters until Saturday after their scrimmage.
As ESPN staff noted, although Long said he personally hasn't spoken with anyone, "that doesn't mean someone close to him hasn't."
As we pointed out above, we're simply passing along information from multiple sources that we believe are credible (based on our historical interactions with these individuals).