Dabo Swinney: ‘No doubt’ Morris will win at Arkansas

Former boss says Morris is ‘more than ready’ for this opportunity

By Bart Pohlman

Count Dabo Swinney as a fan of Arkansas’ Chad Morris hire.

The Clemson head coach, who’s busy preparing his team for its third-straight appearance in the College Football Playoff, took a chance on Morris back in 2011, when he brought him in as the Tigers’ offensive coordinator.

Both the Tigers and Morris have been on the rise ever since: Clemson has won 10 or more games in each season since 2011, and Morris just landed his first Power 5 conference coaching job.

In an interview with Sports Talk on Thursday, Swinney said Morris deserves some credit for helping turn Clemson into the program it’s become.

“He had been doing this (offensive) system for so long, and he had studied with (Auburn coach) Gus (Malzahn) and all that,” Swinney said. “He just had some answers we didn’t have that eventually, we probably would have gotten to the hard way. But he was really able to fill in some blanks for us and really complete what we were trying to do. And then we just kind of put our own brand on it and grew it from there. It was just a blast to work with him for four years. We had a ton of fun.”

Morris was a part of 42 wins at Clemson, and improved SMU every year he was there. Swinney doesn’t see Morris’ winning ways coming to an end at Arkansas.

“Everywhere he’s been, he’s won,” Swinney said. “I don’t see that changing. They’re going to have to change a few things, get the personnel the way they need it, and obviously the key is recruiting.

“But right out of the gate, I think the biggest thing you’ll see is you’ll see guys having fun. You’re going to see a fun offensive style of play. I know he’ll put a great emphasis on getting the defensive staff situated and so for. It’ll be a fun brand. It’ll be something that Arkansas folks are going to love to come and see. They’re going to compete and play with great effort.”

That fun offensive style Swinney mentioned led SMU to having the eighth-highest scoring offense in the country, with an average of 40.2 points per game.

There’s a lot that comes with being a head coach at an SEC program, but count Swinney among those who thinks Morris is well prepared for his big break.

“He’s more than ready for this opportunity. He’s very well prepared. He’s very detailed and organized, and he’ll put a great staff together. He’s going to work his butt off in recruiting.

“I don’t have any doubt that he’ll win. There’s just no doubt in my mind, and it’ll be fun to watch.”

To listen to the full interview with Swinney, click below: