Bobby Petrino hasn’t arrived in Arkansas yet. But already, Razorback fans have to be wondering how long he will hang around Fayetteville. A man who flirts with every major job vacancy around can’t be trusted.
Just a year ago, Petrino was confirming for the fourth year in a row that “Louisville is where I want to be,” denying interest in other coaching jobs. Leading fans to believe he would return this year with Brian Brohm to pursue a national championship. Two days after winning the Orange Bowl, however, he was off to the Atlanta Falcons.
Petrino was effusive about his new position, describing it as “the best job in football,” the fruition of his dream of becoming an NFL coach. Fan expectations weren’t that high, he could introduce his system, build the Falcons into a winner over two or three seasons, be there for the long haul as Falcons’ owner Arthur Blank recently told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
“He’s been very clear with me,” Blank said. “He loves Atlanta and he loves the organization. Obviously he’s disappointed in what happened to Michael Vick, but he has great confidence with myself, with [president/general manager] Rich McKay and the coaching staff to put together a winner and be here many years. He told me this is where he wants to be and that his work is just beginning.”
Less than two weeks later, Blank receives a telephone call from Petrino saying he is resigning to take a college job. Before the NFL season is even over. Got the urge to move on.
Arkansas fans feel fortunate to get Petrino, especially after their first choice changed his mind. His reputation as a winning coach overrides any other concerns for now. The Arkansas Rivals Board described the pick as a “Home Run Hire For Hogs!”
It just could be a match made in hog heaven. When other more prestigious coaching vacancies surface, Hog fans should not concern themselves. Petrino will ease anxieties by assuring them that Fayetteville is where he wants to be, and he plans to be there for a long, long time. And you just know he’s a man of his word.
Let’s hear it for Bobby: “Whooo, Pig, Soooeeee!”