Jimmy Johnson: Arkansas should rehire Petrino

Could the Hogs be calling Bobby Petrino again? (AP photo)

Could the Hogs be calling Bobby Petrino again? (AP photo)

Arkansas alum Jimmy Johnson says he has the perfect hire for the Razorbacks to replace the fired Bobby Petrino: Bobby Petrino.

Johnson, the former head coach of the Miami Hurricanes, Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins, told Gino Torretta and Jack Arute on their Sirius XM radio show:

“Some people might laugh but I’m serious about it. If they want an outstanding coach they ought to bring back Petrino or hire Butch Davis. And people say, ‘Well how in the world can you bring back Petrino?’ I said, ‘Listen, you forgave Bill Clinton.’ Forgive the man. Forgive the man for making a bad decision. Give him an opportunity to coach again.

“I mean he wants to get back into coaching and he’s a great coach and he made a mistake. This whole country, it’s built on forgiving people and giving them second chances. And I think the fan base would love to bring him back. But if they don’t bring him back? But you know, Butch Davis, give him an opportunity. …”

Davis is another former Hurricane coach who was fired by the University of North Carolina amid an NCAA investigation into the Tar Heel football program. Davis was not directly linked to any of the violations that occurred.

Petrino, on the other hand, was linked to wrongdoing — albeit off the field. He was fired in April after a motorcycle wreck involving a woman with whom he admitted having an affair. Arkansas currently has an interim coach, John L. Smith.

On Wednesday, Petrino’s father told the Louisville Courier-Journal that his son was interested in the head coaching job at Kentucky, which announced last week the firing of Joker Phillips.

“I just know this, that he’s interested in Kentucky,” Bobby Petrino Sr. told the newspaper. “He wants to stay in the SEC. That was his life’s goal was to go to the SEC.”

“You know, he made mistakes,” Petrino Sr. said, “but he couldn’t have gone through any punishment worse than losing his job. He’s missed coaching tremendously.”

While it seems unlikely Petrino will return to Arkansas, he’ll undoubtedly be hired by someone at some point. In addition to Kentucky, fans on message boards at Tennessee, Auburn and even Georgia Tech have expressed support for hiring him. What program do you think is the best fit for Petrino?

164 comments Add your comment

red-faced & punch drunk

November 8th, 2012
5:57 am

It will really say something about the program that hires him. He’s damaged goods….no pun intended.

Forbud

November 8th, 2012
6:02 am

Where ever he goes he will bring chaos and distrust with him. If he is to coach again he has not earned a spot at an SEC school. He needs to re-earn his status and trust and for that matter his ability to set a good example for his players.

Zinc

November 8th, 2012
6:29 am

He will end up at Auburn. They will sit on Chizik for one more year and let Petrino stay in the bullpen. They wanted him all along.

Derek

November 8th, 2012
6:30 am

The same people who forgave an impeached President, are against forgiving a football coach? What a bunch of hypocrites ! The man can coach! Heck Arkansas can get him cheap now, instead of 3.5 mil a year probably 1 mil ! And guess what? He’s the best coach out there, he still has a house there, his brother is there and everything is still in place. Put him on a short leash and put incentives for bonuses. He can recruit and can coach

Derek

November 8th, 2012
6:32 am

Oh BTW , I played at Arkansas, the players still wanted him to stay, and so did most of the alumni and fans , the big problem is Long and Broyles….

georgiadawg70

November 8th, 2012
6:34 am

I think the Hogs should rehire Petrino and make Bill Clinton the offensive(as in repulsive) coordinator.

Sid

November 8th, 2012
6:35 am

He should have to start over, maybe a high school assistant coaching position. I’m not against him working his way back up to the top but even in NASCAR when you get the Lucky Dog you go to the back of the pack. Petrino should not be allowed to hire any subordinates either. And Bobby, leave them high school girls alone.

aps

November 8th, 2012
6:35 am

Come on Jimmy!! Second chance? Just counting the Atlanta Falcons and nothing before this would be at least his third chance. Americans believe in second chances sure, but this guy is a scumbag.

georgiadawg70

November 8th, 2012
6:36 am

Maybe Monica could be a cheerleader. Hey it’s Arkansas. What do you expect?

JC

November 8th, 2012
6:48 am

The Georgia Tech Community seems to want Petrino or Chizik in place after this year. Someone that recruits will want to play for. We cant get decent recruits because of the non Pro Stlye offense.

BubbaDaBaller

November 8th, 2012
6:53 am

Sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooieeeeeeeeeeeeee Pigtrino! Needs to have a “no motorcycle & Chica” clause in his contract…they should write it up in the Extended Stay Hotel format…$149/wk or $33/day…

Lab

November 8th, 2012
6:53 am

No! Sends conflicting message to youth and young adults regarding character, sexual harassment issues in the workplace and the responsibility of adults to the young regarding these issues.

Lab

November 8th, 2012
6:53 am

Enter your comments here

Derek

November 8th, 2012
6:54 am

I played at Arkansas, the reason Petrino likes the high school girls here is because they all gain a lot of weight once they hit their 20s. So I can understand hIs reasoning, bring him back he’s a great guy!!!

Kiddieo

November 8th, 2012
7:00 am

he has as much a chance at being rehired at arkansas, as he does with the atlanta falcons

Browncoat

November 8th, 2012
7:00 am

Well if fans on message boards think he should be hired, it must be ok.

Onward

November 8th, 2012
7:01 am

You get what you pay for. Arkansas knows he’s a cheat and a liar. They know he violates hiring practices. If that’s what they want in a leader of young people, let them rehire Petrino.

Sid

November 8th, 2012
7:05 am

Derek
November 8th, 2012
6:32 am

********************************************
Ok, I won’t even bring up the “I played @ Ark” remark but enlighten us on how Broyles is the problem…..: ?

Sid

November 8th, 2012
7:07 am

” In addition to Kentucky, fans on message boards at Tennessee, Auburn and even Georgia Tech have expressed support for hiring him.”

**************************************************************
Give me a link to back this statement up.

Max Sizemore

November 8th, 2012
7:11 am

Aside from the character issues, Petrino’s teams are horrible on defense. Great on offense, sure, but that’s it.

dcb

November 8th, 2012
7:13 am

Hey nothing surprises me anymore. This garbage about coaches being positive role models for their players went by the wayside for the mantra “win at all costs” many moons ago. Arkansas hired Petrino before forgiving the jumping of contracts for “greener pastures” that was a history with this guy – just like Alabama did with Saban and LSU with Miles. But they’re winners in the record book. So Arkansas will look the other way and using in Jimmy Johnson’s words – ‘Listen, you forgave Bill Clinton.’ as their public good Christian stance. And if Arkansas doesn’t, Kentucky will. Look at the track record of the coach they have for their basketball team now.

Obama Supporter

November 8th, 2012
7:13 am

Football fans are like Obama supporters…why should we care about anything but winning? Don’t worry about the message it would send! We forgave Clinton for whoring around, why not forgive Petrino.

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

No matter what's said he's a good coach

November 8th, 2012
7:18 am

I bet you Kentucky will be going after him!

BobDawg

November 8th, 2012
7:19 am

I think whoever hires him should frame that pic of him all battered up and make him put it in his office…

No matter what's said he's a good coach

November 8th, 2012
7:20 am

Compared to Penn St. coaches and other administration that turned their heads – Petrino’s a saint…

BubblesB

November 8th, 2012
7:25 am

No one should EVER hire Petrino for any reason.

Sid

November 8th, 2012
7:28 am

Maybe Jimmy Johnson has an ulterior motive……………………..

(reprinted without permission)

“Johnson interviewed for the head coaching job at Arkansas when Lou Holtz left following the 1983 season, then later found out that Ken Hatfield had already been hired. Upset that Frank Broyles (who was still the Arkansas athletic director) made no mention of this during the interview, Jimmy distanced himself from his alma mater. As payback for the snub, a home-and-home series was scheduled with Arkansas. In 1987 Miami gave Arkansas its worst home loss ever by a point margin of 51-7.”

Sid

November 8th, 2012
7:30 am

No matter what’s said he’s a good coach
November 8th, 2012
7:20 am

Compared to Penn St. coaches and other administration that turned their heads – Petrino’s a saint…
********************************************
No matter what’s said he’s a good coach= you mean Sandusky of course

Jock Sniffer

November 8th, 2012
7:33 am

All of us jock sniffers only care about winning. Petrino will be back. Hey, look at Penn State. There was a riot by students to keep a child molester as coach. Petrino was only trying to score on and off of the field.

Coastal Dog SSI

November 8th, 2012
7:34 am

I agree with Jimmy Johnson.

Braves #17 Fan

November 8th, 2012
7:34 am

I agree with forgiveness, but unfortunately he’s lost all respect.

Sid

November 8th, 2012
7:35 am

Ok, enough here……………Petrino’s a Peeshwank.

everydayjane

November 8th, 2012
7:43 am

Let him coach again! My goodness…

Joey Know it all

November 8th, 2012
7:43 am

Zinc,

Auburn won’t wait until next year. Chizik is out this year and Petrino steps in. You can bank on it.

John

November 8th, 2012
7:56 am

He will be at Kentucky. They are a low enough profile in football to hire him without too much criticism.

hjacket

November 8th, 2012
8:01 am

I say fire Jimmy Johnson for even writing this and make sure he stays off college campuses.

NCDawg

November 8th, 2012
8:04 am

Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy, making a mistake is one thing- abusing your position is quite another. If he had an affair and was fired for lying about it, that would be one thing. But the man used his position to hire his mistress for a position she wasn’t qualified for. That serious business. He is lucky the university did not press charges. That my friends is fraud.
No if wants back into coaching he needs to prove himself at a lower level school before he just waltzes his way back to a multi-million $ contract again. And even then his agent better be prepared to accept an airtight contract from the hiring school with zero leeway.

DawgGuy

November 8th, 2012
8:08 am

It’s not just about a married man having an affair with a young woman.

1) He put his young squeeze on the University of Arkansas payroll.

2) He was having an affair with a subordinate.

Any university that would have him is no school that I would want my son to attend.

GameTime

November 8th, 2012
8:10 am

To suggest there’s even mild interest at Georgia Tech in hiring Petrino is pure B.S. and is nothing but journalistic sensationalism. It’s the kind of crap that makes the AJC such a failing media option.

jimbob

November 8th, 2012
8:10 am

Will the ajc please start a Fullmer to GT media campaign?

jrh

November 8th, 2012
8:11 am

Probably 75% of the people calling him a scum bag and cheat have done things equally as bad or worse than he did, they just didn’t have the opportunity to do it on a National stage! We are quick to accuse and convict but very pitiful about forgiveness. The bible says ‘Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”, I see a lot of rocks flying, but I bet they are ALL be thrown by the sinners who have not be caught or got in a situation and out before anybody knew about it! His issue was more of a family issue than a work issue and should be resolved by his family! People can chose their role models and we will just decide here and now, he shouldn’t e considered a roll model but he is a great coach! Most pro players aren’t good roll models either but we let them keep playing!

james

November 8th, 2012
8:12 am

I would think KY has to much class to hire him?
Auburn probably would cause they want to win at
any cost(see Cam– never went to class- stole computer
from UF Student)

No way I would hire that SOB…

Call It Like It Is

November 8th, 2012
8:12 am

You have to be kidding me. The man dumps on the Falcons, brings shame to Ark, than all is forgiven hire him back? So how many second chances does one get? Yeah lets hire him and heck might as well hire Vick as his OC, what a team that would be.

dick whiskey

November 8th, 2012
8:13 am

jimmy johnson is a full of s*** blowhard,full of himself,don’t have any respect for this jerk after seeing him on that infomercial selling his soul to shill for that guy that had the wal-street investment scam going,just send us 500 bucks and we will show you how to make millions in the stock market, can’t see how people were dumb enough to fall for that

drsoul

November 8th, 2012
8:17 am

I am sure that all of the adversarial posts here are such purists…!!! never committed ANY KIND of issue that begged for forgiveness in their life, never to be repeated… such a totally judgmental society… some of you I would never want children under your influence or in your presence…

Who cares?

November 8th, 2012
8:29 am

Remember Auburn tried to hire him when Tuberville was on staff as the HC! They’ve wanted him for years.
Also, isn’t it odd that Petrino was all beaten and scraped up after the ‘motorcycle wreck’ but the young lady was apparently not hurt. Odd. Did I mention the man to whom she was engaged at the time is a
strength and conditioning coach? Maybe it wasn’t the asphalt that got Petrino.

Randy

November 8th, 2012
8:33 am

Woke up Tuesdays as Marxist’s

Eisendawg

November 8th, 2012
8:37 am

Does make sense when you consider Bill Clinton was from Arkansas, and Petrino coached at Arkansas, and they both are a little shady, and obviously have a weakness for the other sex. My only question with Petrino is “did he inhale”? lol

Bulldawg

November 8th, 2012
8:41 am

I don’t think this has anything to do with forgiveness. Petrino can be forgiven for what he did at Arkansas, but that doesn’t mean you put him back in as the head coach.

A child molester can be forgiven for his/her crimes, but you don’t hire them as a daycare worker. Petrino has character flaws that are detrimental to the development of the players he was hired to lead. The key flaw to me is his lack of commitment as was demonstrated with the Falcons and his family.

Coaches are role models whether they like it or not. Petrino is not a good role model even though he may be a good coach. His actions go way beyond the gridiron and have had a negative impact on young men and women all over this nation. If I were an athletic director looking for a coach, I’d take a pass on Petrino.