FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - Arkansas athletics director Jeff Long won Hogs fans over with the hiring of Bobby Petrino. Long won them over again with Petrino's firing.
Long Friday responded to a report by KNWA in Fayetteville he is being linked to the same opening at Stanford University. He issued this statement, emphasizing his wish to stay at Arkansas.
"Although I do not consider it appropriate to discuss the personnel searches of other universities or colleges, I feel it's important to address recent speculation about me and the athletics director position at another prestigious institution," said Long. "Although I can't be responsible for what others are saying or thinking, I do know that I am not interested in leaving the University of Arkansas."
Long took over as athletics director in 2007, replacing Frank Broyles. He quickly turned the school's athletics department into a money-maker. He instituted the football donation program known as R.S.V.P. in 2010. That helped turn Arkansas into a top-ten profit-making program. Long has also been spear-heading a program-wide facilities improvement costing millions of dollars. His most important role in the eyes of Razorbacks fans is finding Petrino's replacement. He hired John L. Smith in April to run the football program. However, that contract is only for ten months.
"My interest and commitment continues to be providing leadership to the University of Arkansas and to Razorback athletics at this critical time in our program's history."
Current Stanford athletics director Bob Bowlsby will become the next commissioner of the Big 12 Conference.