We all know that Gene Chizik is a bad coach, and that he is most likely done as an FBS head coach after this year. No coach has done less with more than Gene Chizik in the history of our beloved institution. While the first two years were relatively successful and gave us hope that perhaps the 5-19 record at Iowa State was due to a lack of resources and not a lack of ability, the last two years have completely destroyed that hope. Declining performance, short-sighted and foolish personnel decisions, and an unbelievably stupid decision to abandon the offensive scheme that won a national championship and that he spent 4 years recruting for has resulted in the most disastrous season in the history of Auburn football.
Gene Chizik, as well as most of his staff, are about to get kicked to the curb. Pretty much everybody agrees that is what needs to happen. However, that is where the agreement ends. Where do we go from here? Who do we bring in to take the reigns?
I believe the answer is Bobby Petrino. After a lot of thinking on the subject, he is the best, most realistic option right now. Is he a great option? That depends on how you look at the situation. I think he is, simply because he fits the bill the best in our situation now.
There are a lot of people that are screaming that they don’t want Petrino. Petrino has no character. He reflects badly on the program, on the university, etc. Even though I am about to make the case for him, believe it or not, I actually agree with you. Bobby Petrino has a track record of being an absolute scumbag. From abruptly abandoning the Atlanta Falcons by leaving a form letter in each of his players’ lockers, to hiring an underqualified young blond assistant so she could polish his knob, to lying to the cops and the press about which knob polishing blonde did not, in fact, wreck his Harley, Bobby Petrino can make a Bill Clinton look like Mother Teresa.
Bobby Petrino is a h***y old goat with no discernable morals or conscience. This is not something I am disputing. However, there is also something that, if you are intellectually honest, that you also cannot dispute: Bobby Petrino is a brilliant offensive football coach.
While Gene Chizik has done less with more, Bobby Petrino took a bottom half SEC dweller in Arkansas and turned them into a perinnial contender. He was never quite able to get them over the top, but I believe that was largely due to his location and inablity to get top talent to come to Arkansas. Arky doesn’t have near the resources that Auburn does, nor the recruiting base. I’d love to see what Petrino could do with those resources.
Of course, the fact that Bobby is a proven winner and arguably the best offensive mind in college football is just one small part of the puzzle. To understand the other parts, you have to step away from the ‘Auburn Family’ for a moment, and look at where we are from an outside perspective. While we are Auburn fans, and we KNOW that the firing of Gene Chizik isn’t just about this one year, it’s about the entire body of work, the national media and average Joe that doesn’t follow Auburn football as closely as we do does NOT know that. To them, we are firing a coach that won a national championship two years ago after one bad season. Anybody who has actually followed the situation and knows anything about Auburn football knows better, but most people don’t. Most people are fairweather fans or idiot reporters looking to sell a story. Make no mistake about it, we WILL take heat in the press for firing Chizik this year.
I don’t care. They are morons, and they don’t know the situation like we do. I view them as a view movie critics, or political talking heads, or any critics for that matter. They can go screw themselves. Why don’t you try making your own movie? Or running yourself for office and putting yourself in the situation of having to make decisions, or put a piece of yourself out there? No, it’s much easier to point the finger at others rather than make a difference yourself. To me, that is the very essence of being a chicken (poop) failure at life.
But I digress…..
Anyway, the point is, when we fire Chizik, as much as everyone, including myself, will want a ‘big splash’ hire, we will simply not be in a position to make one. We’ll be paying a $7.5 million dollar buyout, and we’ll have just fired a guy that was a national champion 2 years ago. If you were a big name coach, would you come here? If you were a bean counter at Auburn, would you be willing to spend the money necessary to get one, seeing as how you just got done coughing up $7.5 million bucks to fire the last guy?
I didn’t think so. That doesn’t leave us with many options.
One option would be to hire another no-name guy and give him a shot at the bigtime. This is what Jacobs did in deciding to go with Gene Chizik. He got Chizik cheap, and crossed his fingers that 5-19 at Iowa State didn’t mean anything.
We all know how that turned out.
There are some names being thrown around in the ‘no-name hire’ category. I could go over each, but it would be irrelevant. Each no-name is called that for a reason: they are unproven as a big-time head coach. You could roll the dice again and hope for the best. We could get lucky, or we could be having this same conversation in another 3 or 4 years, after our 50 to 60 million a year football program profit is gone and our available resources are slimmed down even more than Chizik has caused. I, for one, am NOT willing to take that chance, especially considering the fact that we still have the resources to keep it from happening, despite this season. Our football program made $70 MILLION dollars last year in pure profit. That’s a seven followed by seven zeros, people. Don’t tell me we can’t afford a $7.5 million dollar buyout and to take on another big coaching salary, especially if that hire generates excitement and sells tickets and airtime next year. There is no reason to hire a no name coach at a cheap price when we clearly have the means to do otherwise.
As far as a big splash hire, I’d love to see Bill Cowher, Chris Petersen, Jon Gruden, or (insert football coach who’s name you know). If we can do that, I’d say go for it! That would be my number one choice. Someone who can compete with Nick Satan and the turds on a recruiting and name basis would be absolutely ideal in my opinion. Realistically, though, I don’t see that happening. We’re like the really hot girl that you’d love to date but won’t because she has too much baggage. Let’s face it, we don’t have the best reputation for how we treat our coaches in the last few years, do we? We’re about to add to that reputation by dumping a guy that brought us a crystal football two years ago. If I were a big name coach, I’d be VERY skeptical about coming to Auburn, even for big money. That puts us at a severe handicap.
So that leaves us with one option. The disgraced but brilliant coach looking for another shot. We can get him relatively cheap, and we know we’re getting a proven winner that will at the very least stop the bleeding in our program. If he gets h***y and bangs another intern or cheerleader then we are perfectly justified in firing him then, with no recouse, and we’re the good guys because we gave him another chance. That would give us the reputation repair and increased resources to go after a Bill Cowher or someone like that in the future. If he keeps it in his pants and wins football games, then we’re set with coaching for a while. Petrino was nowhere near getting fired at Arky until his little coach wanted to score more than it should have. His on-field performance was as good as it gets, and with Auburn’s resources, there is no telling how far he could take the team.
Simply put, Bobby Petrino is our best option right now. He’s the only option I see that is both realistic and a proven winner. If we hire Charlie Strong or somebody like that, we might win or we might not. Who knows? But if we hire Bobby Petrino, we’re going to win, and win fast. He is the clearest option we have to get out of the mess we’re in. If you look at the facts, run the numbers, and take emotion and luck out of it, Bobby Petrino should be Auburn’s next head football coach. I will agree with most of you that I might not necessarily like it, but if we want our beloved Auburn Tigers to be back on top of the college football world where they belong, then Bobby Petrino is the man to take us there.
Time to build a Harley dealership in Auburn and hire an unqualified hot blonde to run it. That oughta do it.