Arkansas Coach And Mother Unhurt In Aircraft Mishap

Sunday, March 4th 2007, 8:05 pm
By: News On 6

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) Arkansas football coach Houston Nutt and his mother escaped injury Sunday when the landing gear on their plane collapsed during an emergency landing

Arkansas athletic department spokesman Kevin Trainor said Nutt and his mother, Emogene Nutt, were traveling to Lafayette, La., for the Sun Belt Conference basketball tournament to watch Arkansas State and coach Dickey Nutt -- Houston's brother -- play New Orleans on Sunday night.

Trainor said Houston Nutt boarded the private aircraft – a twin-engine King Air 200 propeller-driven plane -- at Fayetteville and traveled to Little Rock to pick up his mother for the trip to Lafayette. But after the plane took off from Little Rock, Trainor said, pilot Mark Myers thought he detected a problem with the landing gear.

Rather than attempt a landing at Little Rock, Trainor said, Myers returned to Fayetteville, where the plane is based, for maintenance. Before landing at Fayetteville's Drake Field, Trainor said, the Fayetteville Fire Department was notified of the impending emergency landing.

Just before landing, the pilot made a pass near the airport's tower to confirm the landing gear were in place. They were, Trainor said, but when the plane touched down on the runway, two of the assemblies collapsed, and the plane dropped to its belly and came to a stop in a grassy area alongside the runway.

The pilot was also uninjured, Trainor said.

Nutt and his mother boarded another plane at Fayetteville and flew to Lafayette in time for ASU's game, Trainor said.