Three days after Bobby Petrino was summarily dismissed by Arkansas, it appears the now-former Razorbacks head coach won’t attempt to drag the university through any additional public mud.
Both the Arkansas Democrat Gazette ($) and ESPN.com’s Joe Schad are reporting that Petrino has decided he will not challenge or appeal his termination with cause. Under the terms of Petrino’s contract, the coach was permitted to ask for a review of the termination.
For once in this whole sordid soap opera, however, Petrino decided to do the admirable thing and simply walk away from that option.
Because he was fired with cause — conflict of interest, concealing an inappropriate relationship with a female UA staff member — Petrino’s contract calls for the $18 million buyout built in to the deal to be negated. If Petrino had been fired without cause, he would have been eligible for the entire eight-figure sum.
As far as a replacement for Petrino goes, and despite the names of multiple potential candidates being tossed around, athletic director Jeff Long tweeted Thursday night that no decision has been made on either a specific person or even which particular tack — interim head coach or permanent one — the athletic program will take.
“At this time I have not spoken to anyone about the Head Coaching position,” Long wrote. ”No decision on Interim Coach, Know current assts well, no need for folks to lobby, have watched for myself. All scenarios still on table.”