Your Take is a chance to start to thoughtful, spirited, intelligent and nice conversation about some of the hotter topics in college football. It allows the reader to have a voice as the best comments will be compiled into a later post (if there are enough good comments). Join in the conversation and have your thoughts heard.
On Tuesday I threw out the question of whether Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino should be relieved of his duties. Within a few hours, Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long answered the question by firing Petrino for cause.
Now that the news has had a little time to sink in, I'm posting a new question: Did Long make the right decision?
There was no doubt Long was hurt by Petrino's actions and was even more upset about what it did to the team and the athletics department — he got choked up a couple times throughout his press conference. But was it the right move for the university? Did Petrino's inappropriate actions and lying warrant a firing or would the university been better served by giving Petrino a suspension of some sort that would have allowed him to remain the head coach?
Obviously, the timing of Petrino's dismissal isn't ideal. It will be difficult for Long to lure any of his top candidates away from their current jobs and Arkansas might have to work with an interim coach until the right hire can be made next offseason. That not only puts what many expected to be another great season by the Razorbacks in jeopardy, but creates an uneasy environment for both the players and the coaches remaining on the staff.
Shockingly, this might not be over. There's a clause in Petrino's contract that allows him to contest dismissal for a cause. He must submit his request for a review of his dismissal in writing within five days. Then the matter is reviewed by a committee composed of the vice chancellor for finance and administration, the vice chancellor for academic affairs and the chairperson of the faculty committee on athletics.
There's no word on whether Petrino plans to contest the dismissal, but it would make for some interesting drama.
I think Long made the right decision. It wasn't the easy or popular decision, but it was the right decision. As a boss, you can't employ someone you can't trust and Petrino willfully deceived Long multiple times without regard to the consequences.
That's my take, what's yours?