Mike Irwin posted a fine blog over the weekend about Bobby Petrino and who really owns the Razorback program. It’s worth your time to read it all but here’s an excerpt we thought was interesting:
If you (Petrino) do end up coaching the Hogs again please keep in mind that it’s not really your program. The fans own it. They build the facilities. They pay for the scholarships and coaches salaries. They loan the program to you in the hopes that you will value it as much as they do.
It’s a quaint notion to think that the fans of an athletic program actually own it. And, theoretically, we agree with Mike. As fans, we’re here for a lifetime and Bobby Petrino is just passing through.
But there should be no confusion about who the ‘majority ownership’ will be deciding Petrino’s fate in the coming days. Jeff Long, UA administration and the usual cadre of lawyers and power brokers will be making that call.
Organize all the support rallies and online petitions that you want. The truth is we, the fans, own no part and have no say on this program-defining decision. We just have to live with it for what will seem like a lifetime.
Live with the repercussions on the field if Petrino is fired. The unavoidable setback to the progress made over the last four seasons. The death of the near-term dream of a national championship. The potentially debilitating financial implications. The acceptance of the need for patience as another program rebuilding process begins again.
Or…live with the ridicule if Petrino is retained. The haughty columns by national media. The constant attempts to debase any accomplishments on the field with regular reminders of the indiscretions that occurred off of it. The inevitable divide in support from what had been a strongly united Razorback fan base.
There will be wins again on The Hill but there are no winners here.