Sunday morning in the wake of a 31 point loss to Syracuse, Bobby Petrino was fired as Head Coach of Louisville Football. He wasn’t only one given the stinky boot that day either. They fired everyone close to him as well. Son and Quarterback Coach Nick Petrino, son-in-law and Linebacker Coach Ryan Beard, son-in-law and Defensive Line Coach L.D. Scott, and Operations Director Andy Wagner were all canned at the same time. Louisville will uphold his contract and will be paying him his $14 million buyout over the next 3 years.
Athletic Director Vince Tyra has appointed Secondary Coach Lorenzo Ward to fill the vacancy as Interim Head Coach. This has to be a sigh of relief for Louisville fans. I was genuinely worried they would promote Defensive Coordinator and human disaster Brian VanGorder. Still not sure how he survived the purge. In terms of a permanent replacement I have heard a couple of names so far. Biggest names include Mike Leach (better not), Syracuse HC Dino Babers, and Clemson DC Brent Venables. Of course there is nothing official yet and these are just ramblings. But, there is one name that has been a little more than a ramble. It’s closer to a bullhorn directly into my face. That name is Purdue HC Jeff Brohm.
Jeff Brohm is from Louisville, has played at Louisville, and has coached at Louisville. He seems to be the general consensus among Louisville fans. His track record speaks for itself with success at WKU and Purdue over the last couple of years. Using his Louisville and Trinity High School background, Brohm has been able to steal huge recruits away from Louisville, including electric Freshman Rondale Moore. This would no doubt be a huge get for the Cardinals and would reunite an otherwise uninterested fanbase. The question remains though: Would Jeff Brohm be willing to give up everything he has built at Purdue to come to Louisville? Keep an eye out for an upcoming article from @Soft7Buck.
So, Louisville fired Bobby Petrino and everyone close to him and will pay him his $14 million buyout. Then they will most likely hire Jeff Brohm to replace him. Pretty cut and dry right? Yes, but the more you look into it, the more you start to notice inconsistencies in the narrative.
Something fishy is going on at Louisville. Strap in; it’s speculation time. The cause for termination everyone has accepted is that Petrino was fired because of poor performance, going 2-8 so far this season. But why would you fire a coach who has made 4 straight bowl games and had 4 8-win seasons in a row for one bad year? That doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.
Louisville has supposedly wanted Jeff Brohm for a while, but maybe didn’t think he was ready the last time there was a Head Coaching vacancy in 2014. During Petrino’s second stint as HC of the Cards, Brohm took the HC job at Purdue in 2016. If they fired Petrino in order to get Brohm, that actually makes more sense than the poor performance reason. But this still leaves a lot of questions unanswered. Like why has there been a general lack of effort from most of the team this year? This has actually been addressed by AD Tyra. In a press conference Sunday afternoon he said, “If you want to say culture equals effort, there’s something screwy going on there… the effort wasn’t what it’s been historically. I’ve told the kids that. I’m not bashful about that. They can’t hide from it. It’s on film. Whatever the root cause was behind that, it needed to go away.”
It sounds a lot like he is saying that the players did not want to play for Petrino. But why? There has been 20 players who have transferred this season, including Russ Yeast who did not travel to Syracuse last weekend, but is now expected to be at practice this week since Petrino has been fired.
Again, I am just speculating here, but if Louisville wanted full regime change, they should have completely cleaned house. They decided to DC Brian VanGorder who has been close to Petrino since he was at the Atlanta Falcons. There are just some things that don’t add up to me and the last thing the University of Louisville needs is another scandal. I hope this isn’t the $14 million cover up it is beginning to look like.
*Side note: I hope to God that Louisville does not get Mike Leach. They already took a basketball coach I liked in Chris Mack. Don’t take another one from me.