South Alabama coach John Pelphrey has reached an agreement to be the next coach at Arkansas, CBS SportsLine.com learned Sunday. The development should end a tumultuous search for Stan Heath's replacement that first featured either official or unofficial offers to Billy Gillispie, John Calipari, Bill Self, Tim Floyd and Dana Altman.
A press conference is tentatively scheduled for Monday afternoon.
Altman took the Arkansas job last week and was formally introduced at a press conference. But less than 24 hours later the Creighton coach opted to return to Omaha while citing family issues, though sources have told CBS SportsLine.com the situation was more complex, specifically that Altman wasn't comfortable with the culture he was inheriting considering two players had recently tested positive for marijuana while another was in serious academic trouble.
Pelphrey is a 38-year-old former college star from Kentucky who spent a combined eights years on Billy Donovan's staffs at Marshall and Florida before taking the South Alabama job in 2002-2003. He just completed his fifth season at the school, leading the Jaguars to a 20-12 record and regular season Sun Belt title, though they were upset in the league tournament and consequently relegated to the NIT.
Arkansas should return all five starters from an NCAA Tournament team. The star of the group is Patrick Beverley, a 6-foot-1 guard who averaged 13.9 points per game last season and was named the SEC Freshman of the Year.