Arkansas Athletic Director Jeff Long announced in a press conference late this evening that Arkansas head football coach Bobby Petrino has been placed on Administrative Leave after more details came out about Petrino’s motorcycle wreck. Petrino wrecked his motorcycle earlier this week, and it was reported today that he was not alone on the bike when the accident took place.
On the back of the bike was former Arkansas volleyball player, 25-year-old Jessica Dorrell. It just so happens that Dorell was hired by Petrino as a Student Development Coordinator last week. Petrino admitted to a “previous inappropriate relationship” in a written statement. Here is the full statement courtesy of CBS:
The state police report provides an accurate description of my accident, which includes details that had not publicly come to light prior to the report being issued. I regret that I have not publicly acknowledged a passenger on the vehicle. I have been in constant pain, medicated and the circumstances involving the wreck have come out in bits and pieces. That said I certainly had a concern about Jessica Dorrell’s name being revealed. In my press conference, I referred to her simply as “a lady.” My concern was to protect my family and a previous inappropriate relationship from becoming public. In hindsight, I showed a serious mistake in judgment when I chose not to be more specific about those details. Today, I’ve acknowledged this previous inappropriate relationship with my family and those within the athletic department administration.
I apologize to my wife, Becky, and our four children, Chancellor (David) Gearhart, Jeff Long, the Board of Trustees, University administration, my coaching staff, student-athletes and the entire state of Arkansas. I have been humbled by the outpouring of concern and get well wishes. I apologize to the Razorback Nation for the attention my actions have brought to the University of Arkansas and our program. I will fully cooperate with the University throughout this process and my hope is to repair my relationships with my family, my Athletic Direction, the Razorback Nation and remain the head coach of the Razorbacks.
AD Jeff Long said he will take some time to review the situation before coming to a decision on Petrino’s future with the program. It’s important to note that Petrino isn’t finding himself in this hot water because he was having an affair, no matter how wrong that is in its own right. He is in trouble because he lied to his boss about what happened, and then hired a woman that he was carrying on an affair with.
Jeff Long also said that Petrino will “no longer be conducting the duties of head coach at this time.” In his absence from the team, assistant coach Taver Johnson will serve as the interim head coach for the time being.
Personally, I think this is the end of the Bobby Petrino era in Fayetteville. I just don’t really see a way he can get out of this situation with his job.