Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Bobby Petrino: Different Story, Same Ending

At first glance, Bobby "motherf***ing" Petrino (or BMFP) became what every man dreams of becoming. Dominant head football coach, drives a motorcycle, and hooks up with hot chicks.

$20,000 and 9 days later, maybe we wouldn't want to be him after all. Here's three things we've learned through this process.

Bobby Petrino isn't exactly a nice guy
First, he tried to steal the head coaching job at Auburn from Tommy Tuberville, the same guy who hired him as his Offensive Coordinator just a few years before. Then, he quits on the Atlanta Falcons halfway through the season, leaves them a note telling them he's leaving, and heads to the University of Arkansas. Now, he's fired for lying to his boss, manipulating the system, and spending a little bit too much time with a girl 30 years younger than him. Some wonder whether he would have gone on to win a championship had he stayed at Arkansas, but it always seems that a lack of character ends up catching up with most in sports.

Winning is most important, but not the only thing
This might be a strange thing to say, since Bobby got fired, but anyone who followed the situation closely knows that the decision was essentially a coin-flip throughout the entire process. I still think it could have gone either way. The case against Bobby? He lied to his boss, embarrassed the university, and hired his mistress. The case for Bobby? He won 21 games the past two years. That's it. Looking back, this should have been an easy decision, especially from a legal perspective. Two people who are having an inappropriate relationship are working together. One of them definitely had to go. Legally, Bobby should have been the first to go.

Winning 21 games almost saved Bobby, so the question becomes: how much would have been enough? Would Saban have been fired? What about Les Miles? What if Arkansas had beaten LSU on the last game of the season? No one will ever know how many more wins would have tipped the scale in Bobby's favor.

Being a coach keeps getting more difficult
I won't ever condone Bobby's actions or anyone else who was fired for their behavior, but the outcome may have been different 15 years ago. The media was a huge factor in this decision, and Bobby may have been saved if it weren't for the fact that Arkansas would have looked terrible to the rest of the nation. Millions of Americans have skeletons in their closet, and the majority of them can get away with it. Not coaches. Their room for error keeps getting smaller and smaller. Because of that, I doubt we will see many coaches stay with one team for more than 10 or 15 years anymore. There is too much pressure. Too much information. Too many land mines. There is no excuse for a coach abusing his power, but the coaches who follow every rule to the T and still win are few and far between.

1 comment:

  1. It's like politics, really. Look at Kennedy vs Clinton. Any figure where the public places its trust and expectations, either by choice or otherwise. We hold them to higher standards.