It's been just under four months since Arkansas fired Bobby Petrino for hiring his young girlfriend to an athletics department position, paying her extra under the table, and lying about it. Four months is barely enough time to break in a new hairstyle, but, naturally, Petrino has found the time to search his soul, change, and tell ESPN's Joe Schad about it.
Today, ESPN.com posted Schad's sit-down on-camera interview with Petrino and a lengthy piece detailing the coach's contrition. The interview and the piece combine to form a sap-dribbling bullshit colossus, one constructed for the sole purpose of getting Bobby Petrino another job. Preferably one that allows him to recoup the "$21 million in potential earnings" that Schad says Petrino lost.
We've encountered Schad's shtick before. Last we met, he was bro-hugging Auburn's PR guy over email ("I have been tweeting about Cam/Heisman and about how Auburn is the best environment in college football right now!"). He's a stooge of the highest order.
The interview clip consists of Joe Schad holding Petrino's hand as the two of them enjoy a nice picnic in the park together. Schad lays his head in Petrino's lap while questions like, "What do you think has been your biggest weakness as a person?" flutter upward from his mouth. Petrino tries his hardest to look serious before running his hands through Schad's hair and eventually saying:
I've made mistakes, I'm going to be a better person because of it...I really feel like I'll be a better coach because this happened, because I'm now gonna know that I'm gonna coach the person as much as the player, and help the person, when he has made mistakes...
They sip champagne, and one pops a strawberry into the other's mouth.
Schad goes on to do even more propping up in his piece, which ends with these paragraphs:
Petrino has a proven record as a head coach, playcaller, quarterback developer and offensive mastermind. He has won 74 percent of his games as a college head coach, a better showing than Nick Saban, Les Miles, Steve Spurrier and Mack Brown.
Petrino's offense was among the top three in the SEC in each of the past three years. And his offense at Louisville was among the top 10 in the nation for four consecutive years. And yet he said he understands that there are no guarantees he'll ever get to run another program.
Does he need to coach again? "I think I do," he said.
Does he think he'll ever coach in a high-profile situation again? "I don't know that right now," he said.
Since being dismissed by Arkansas, schools such as Cal and NFL teams such as the Tennessee Titans have asked him to visit with their coaching staffs. He has done so and might continue.
Petrino won't coach this season but he said he hopes someone gives him at least one more chance.
"I would like to be able to explain the mistakes that I made," he said. "I think I've got to take this one day at a time, continue to improve as a person and as a husband. I'm also going to continue to work on football. And I just hope and pray that I get that opportunity again."
Thank god Joe Schad is here to allow Bobby Petrino to tell us that he will be a better football coach for lying about his affair with a 25-year-old team employee, and to remind us what a good football coach Petrino was in the first place. We're all really jacked about this information, Joe.