Arkansas fires Petrino
Bobby Petrino is out at Arkansas.
ESPN.com's Joe Schad is reporting that Razorbacks athletic director Jeff Long will address the media at 8:15 p.m. ET tonight, at which point Long is expected to announce that Petrino is no longer the head football coach.
Petrino was put on administrative leave last Thursday night, less than a week after he and an Arkansas employee, 25-year-old Jessica Dorrell, were involved in a motorcycle crash. Petrino did not inform Long that Dorrell was with him when he crashed because he said that he wanted to protect his family and "a previous inappropriate relationship from becoming public."
Taver Johnson, who was just hired this offseason, is currently the team's interim head coach. Johnson was an Ohio State assistant last season when the Buckeyes were dealing with a memorabilia-for-cash scandal that cost head coach Jim Tressel his job.
Stay tuned for more information as it becomes available. In the meantime, here were my thoughts on the matter from Saturday morning.
It will be interesting to see if prominent Arkansas booster Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys, has a big influence as to who is the Hogs' next head coach. Jones is fond of Butch Davis, a former Cowboys assistant and a member of the Arkansas Class of 1973. Davis was a defensive end with the Hogs before an injury relegated him to student assistant. Although he was fired from North Carolina in light of the NCAA's investigation into the football program, Davis was not mentioned in the NCAA's notice of allegations. But could Long really fire Petrino to hire Davis, knowing that Davis was running a program that came under NCAA fire?
Promoting from within and going the interim route for the 2012 season is also an option for the Hogs. The talent is there to compete in the SEC and begin a thorough nationwide search after the regular season.
Also keep in mind that Arkansas' offensive coordinator is Paul Petrino, who arrived in Fayetteville this offseason after leaving Illinois. It will be interesting to see if he sticks around in light of his brother's dismissal.
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