Bobby Petrino: Breaking Down Possible Destinations for Former Arkansas Coach

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistNovember 30, 2012

COLUMBIA, SC - NOVEMBER 06:  Head coach Bobby Petrino of the Arkansas Razorbacks reacts to a call against the South Carolina Gamecocks at Williams-Brice Stadium on November 6, 2010 in Columbia, South Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Bobby Petrino is on the market for a new job, but not every program will create a perfect match. 

The former Louisville and Arkansas head coach has proven himself many times on the field. Both teams had multiple 10-win seasons and he won the Orange Bowl with the Cardinals.

However, he has a habit of not leaving teams on the best of terms.

He left Louisville to go to the NFL. He left the Atlanta Falcons to coach at Arkansas. He was fired at Arkansas after lying to his superiors about a relationship between himself and a former student athlete. 

Still, talented coaches usually find their way back to locker rooms. Petrino will get his chance, the only question is where.



After Jon Embree was fired as head coach, Vic Lombardi of CBS Denver originally reported the news that Petrino could be on the list of replacements.


Bobby Petrino's name has surfaced for the CU job. They're very interested.

— Vic Lombardi (@VicLombardi) November 29, 2012


However, that rumor was quickly squashed by athletic director Mike Bohn.

When asked about the rumors, Bohn responded (via Kyle Ringo of the Boulder Daily Camera): "That's absolutely not true. We're not hiring Bobby Petrino. You can quote me."

It would not be the first time that a person of authority said one thing and did another, but this message seems solid. 

Petrino will likely have to keep looking for employment elsewhere.



Tennessee is one of four SEC programs to have already fired its head coach this season, along with Kentucky, Auburn and Arkansas. 

Kentucky has already hired Mark Stoops, but the rest are still searching for replacements.

As a result, a team like Tennessee should look for someone who has already shown he can have success in the SEC. 

In his last two years with Arkansas, Petrino amassed a 12-4 record within the conference, which is no easy task.

Additionally, the Volunteers need someone that can excite the fans and lift the entire program to a new level. The veteran coach is that person.

Chris Smith of Forbes thought he should have been hired at Kentucky, but his points still work for why he should go to Tennessee:

Petrino was one of college football’s top CEOs while at Arkansas. From 2010 to 2012, the Razorbacks’ value rose a staggering 59% to $89 million, good for the eighth-highest in college football. That increase was mainly the result of  strong on-field play on the back of the coach’s cost-efficient spending.

Despite his past, Petrino would be a great addition to the program and should be a top consideration.


North Carolina State

Despite the fact that the team plays in the relatively weak ACC, North Carolina State is a solid job with a good history.

Athletic director Debbie Yow has said she wants someone who can bring in "Alabama-type talent" (via Caulton Tudor of the Charlotte Observer). 

Bobby Petrino might be the best chance to get a coach who can accomplish this without costing Alabama-type money.

Petrino's past has driven the price down for a potential contract, and his desperation would make him more willing to deal with an AD that does not have the best reputation for getting along with her coaches.

This type of match might not come until late in the hiring season after both sides have exhausted other options, but this could be the best fit that either find this year.