FAYETTEVILLE -- A day after naming its defensive coordinator, Arkansas has found its new offensive coordinator.
The Razorbacks announced Jim Chaney will take control of the offense on Wednesday. Chaney, 50, became the Tennessee’s interim head coach after Derek Dooley was fired this season and won his only game as the head coach. He was also Tennessee's offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the last four years.
Prior to coaching in Knoxville, Tenn., Chaney spent three years in the NFL with the St. Louis Rams and 10 years as an offensive coordinator at Purdue.
“Jim Chaney’s approach will blend well with my ideas as we work to put together a plan for the team we have and over time develop our specific philosophy,” Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema said in a statement. “While he was at Purdue, several of the best coaches in the nation sought his advice on how to use the spread offense. Jim went on to spend a few years in the NFL and gained a new appreciation for a pro-style offense similar to the balanced attack we will look to incorporate at Arkansas.
"He has spent his career developing numerous players for the NFL including Drew Brees. He knows the SEC, having coached at Tennessee, and is familiar with what it takes to be successful in this conference. He is an upbeat and positive person who has proven at every stop he is an elite coach in our profession.”
Drew Brees led the NCAA while coached by Chaney in 2000 and went on to be a second-round pick for the San Diego Chargers, eventually won a Super Bowl with the New Orleans Saints and has broken several NFL records. Chaney also developed Tyler Bray into a record-breaking, All-SEC quarterback.
Chaney can put together a solid rushing offense as well, shown by Steven Jackson's yearly performances while Chaney was with the Rams.
Jackson rushed for 1,000 yards all three seasons Chaney spent in St. Louis. Chaney was the Rams' offensive line coach in 2006 and 2007 before working with tight ends in his final season with the franchise.
Chaney is a Central Missouri State graduate, where he played nose guard. He graduated in 1985 and later that year, he earned his first job coaching at Cal State Fullerton, where he was offensive coordinator, recruiting coordinator and coached every offensive position at some point in his two stints with the Titans.
Chaney was not available for comment Wednesday night. He will participate in a teleconference with the media today.