Arkansas Razorbacks Football: Firing Bobby Petrino Would Be a Big Mistake

James BrownSenior Analyst IApril 6, 2012

The Bobby Petrino scandal is front page stuff.

It’s embarrassing to the University, and everyone involved should be ashamed. For those of you who have been living under a rock, Petrino is currently on administrative leave after lying to his bosses about the details surrounding a motorcycle accident this weekend.

Petrino was spending time with a much younger and very engaged woman named Jessica Dorrell. Petrino was not only in a self-admitted inappropriate relationship with Dorrell, but he hired her to work at Arkansas.

Widespread speculation is circulating about the future of Petrino as the head man at Arkansas. This latest incident could easily cost Petrino his job, but Arkansas would be making a mistake if they let him go.

While there is no excuse for his behavior, the Razorbacks should retain Petrino as head coach. Petrino is responsible for bringing the Razorback football program back to prominence. His record is an amazing 21-5 over the last two years in an extremely difficult football conference. His high-octane offense lures highly-rated recruits, and he has built a team that is competing with the best teams in college football.

For that reason and that reason alone, the Hogs should bring him back.

Is anyone really surprised at his behavior?

It is unfortunate but not surprising. Petrino showed his true colors over the last few years, and this is par for the course. When he left Atlanta he showed a serious lack of loyalty and commitment, but the higher-ups at Arkansas turned a blind eye.

The bottom line is that Arkansas wanted a winning coach, and they were willing to look the other way when they hired Petrino. Now they will have some serious damage control ahead of them as they try to bury this story on the back page.

This has happened to some of the best coaches in the sports world.

College basketball coach Rick Pitino was caught in the middle of an extortion scandal with his mistress, yet he still coaches today, and it is because he is a winner.

Nick Saban and Les Miles are two of the best coaches in college football, but both have had some blowups or investigations in the past. Both coaches are still around simply because they win football games.

It may be a sad state of affairs for the sports world or even the moral fiber of our overall expectations, but Petrino wins football games, and that is all the college football world really cares about.

James Brown is a B/R Featured Columnist and can be followed on Twitter here. Feel free to contact James at