There are multiple reports breaking tonight that Arkansas has decided to fire Bobby Petrino.
Associated Press is reporting that the university has scheduled a Tuesday evening news conference with athletic director Jeff Long.
Petrino's downfall began April 1 when he was involved in a motorcycle accident and he subsequently lied about the presence of a female staffer of the football program being with him. Petrino, the married father of four, failed to mention, both at a news conference and to his boss, Athletics Director Director Jeff Long, that the passenger was Jessica Dorrell, a former Arkansas volleyball player and Razorback Foundation fundraiser who Petrino had hired to a football-department position just days before the accident. He later admitted to having an "inappropriate relationship" with Dorrell.
The state police released the audio of the 911 call reporting Petrino's accident. It revealed Petrino didn't want to call police following the crash, and a subsequent police report showed he asked police if he was required to give the name of the passenger during the accident.
Petrino has just completed back-to-back 10 win seasons at Arkansas, which hadn't happened since Frank Broyles was coach. He also took the Razorbacks to their first BCS bowl game.
At his press conference tonight Arkansas AD Jeff Long made it clear that after completing his investigation there was no choice but to let Petrino go.
Long made it clear that there was no negotiating a way for Petrino to stay on or even working on a buyout over his multi-million contract. Long terminated Petrino "with cause" which means he forfeits his $3.5 million a year salary.
Long said he learned during his review that Dorrell received $20,000 from Petrino and was also hired from a pool of 159 applicants for the job with the athletic department. Dorrell was one of three applicants interviewed for the position, according to Long. Long said the Petrino-Dorrell relationship had been going on for "a significant period of time."
in this case, Coach Petrino abused his authority when he made a staff hire that benefited himself and jeopardized integrity of football program.engaged in a pattern ofno single person is
"In this case, coach Petrino abused his authority when he made a staff hire that benefited himself and jeopardized integrity of football program," Long said.
Long became emotional during the press conference when discussing how he and players had been deceived by Petrino.
At one point, Long was asked if he thought Petrino was bigger than the program.
"Yes," Long said.