Are you serious, Tom Jurich?
I imagine his response goes somewhat along the lines of…. “As a motorcycle wreck, Daryl”.
Of course I was reluctant to the idea of bringing back a former coach of ours. I thought it was just a far fetched joking desire from a broken-hearted Cardnation. I figured we were ready to keep progressing forward with the train that Charlie Strong abruptly jumped off of. And yes, as @the_redbird7 termed it, I’m still ‘smad’ at Charlie for bailing. For the second time in the past year I feel like the girl that got dumped. Once, yes I actually got dumped by my boyfriend of four years and the second time by my football coach of four years. Almost immediately we saw Coach flaunt his new ‘Texas girlfriend’ on the internet. Didn’t you ever watch Spongebob, Charlie?!
Whatever, Charlie. That was the last one. I’m over it.
For two years I’ve been a proud student at Louisville. I recall being at the 790 studio with Drew Deener when news broke about Petrino’s cycle accident in Arkansas. As more of the story unfolded, we learned of the scandal that Petrino committed with an employee and former student athlete. In my heart I felt this was the karma that was coming for ditching the Cards after the victory in the Orange Bowl and ditching Atlanta after a Michael Vick scandal. I remember having the glorious opportunity to report on air that Petrino’s home on ‘Bridgewater Lane’ was for sale! Coincidence? I think not.
When news broke Friday that Charlie was likely leaving the legacy he built and the rumors of a Petrino return began circling, my immediate defensive reaction was HELL NO. “I can’t handle this pain again. I’m still hurt from this Charlie thing.” As a SPAD student at the University learning about sport ethics and the social responsibilities surrounding the world of sport, I’m not proud of the Bobby Petrino saga. I don’t approve of the repeated lying to employers and I don’t approve of the secret relationship with an employee. The bad PR Petrino has been shining on his programs rightfully contribute to my skepticism. To me, sports are supposed to be about more than winning games and making money but about learning important American values. I’d like to believe I’m not the only person that hopes for more than that too. But after Charlie strong bailed, that desire for honesty and commitment faded just a little bit more.
I was strongly opposed to the Petrino hire. Even publicly stated that I would not support the team… But let’s be honest. It’s me. I don’t know that I could ever not be a fan. These are my classmates. I’ve followed these young men for years. I was being a broken-hearted girl and I apologize to my fellow fans for my outrage. However, my skepticism of the hire will remain. What will change it? I’m not entirely sure. Probably wins. Which is what he is hired to produce, right? Heading into the ACC like a train without breaks now, I don’t believe there is a better coach for the job than Bobby Petrino. It’s obvious he’s one of the best coaches in the nation.
After having conversations with other fans, family, and friends about my opinion on the hire, my stance has changed a little…
Why do I ignore and even defend the Pitino scandal? Is it because he wins games? I believe Pitino is a good man that made an indulging mistake. He did it by leaving to go to the NBA and he admits it. He did it by cheating on his wife with an employee’s wife. He admittedly made a mistake to the public. But the difference between him and Petrino is that Pitino never lied to his boss about the situation. It’s not my place as a fan, as a person, as an outsider of the Pitino family to pass judgement or even be affected by another family’s personal relationships with ones father, brother, or husband. The difficult part is that we hold the people in positions of power to a standard. And we develop a personal relationship with them when they don’t even know our own names. So when these people break our trust we or standards we become angry, resentful, critical.
In my google search to add pictures to this post, it looked like this….
So I’m trying to stand back and really think about this… Because obviously I have no other choice now. Do I believe in second chances? Do I? If Charlie Strong ever called TJ and said he wanted his job back, would I still be that broken-hearted girl that got dumped to Texas? Sports are a multi-million dollar business in this country. Business. Sports today are about achievement and money to show. Which you can understand in a capitalist society.
So my criticism is this and I’m only going to say this once more. Bobby Petrino, I understand the desire to leave for the glamours of the NFL. I truly do. After Thursday’s press conference introducing the new hire, information surfaced that Petrino had left Louisville in the ‘appropriate fashion’ with his boss. We, the fans, have done nothing but bash Strong for his departure because we say it was ‘done wrongly’. It’s interesting to think about…. The way media has changed since Petrino had jumped shipped verses Charlie’s. Twitter wasn’t ‘Twitter’ when Bobby first departed. Had we not had media tracking flights and reporting every five minutes of the ‘latest breaking news’ on Charlie, his departure would have probably been deemed ‘appropriate’ as well. So obviously, players following major media outlets learn what is happening through twitter rather than a coach trying to seek out his boss to give him the news he was bailing. Do I blame Charlie? I guess not. He had been passed over for so many years that when Texas comes calling… It’s calling.
Congrats Coach Strong. I’m truly happy for you. You deserve to be in the elite. But like I said on Facebook… I just thought you were going to make Louisville that. So thank you for what you’ve done for the University of Louisville. We wouldn’t be where we were without you and you without us.
A quote from a Facebook friend and fan, Amy fussenager…
It’s interesting though… a man who had extreme success less than a decade ago, been to the NFL, been to the SEC ends up back in little ole Louisville, Kentucky and has the opportunity to compete for a National Championship as we head to the ACC. I’m telling you Cardnation, we have a STRONG foundation.
In Tom We Trust. And when it comes to Bobby Petrino, only time (Tom) will tell ;))))