Just a little while ago, Western Kentucky beat writer Chad Bishop broke news that Bobby Petrino will be named head coach at for the Hilltopper's at a 4pm CST press conference. We have confirmed the hire.
For Western Kentucky the hire provides a couple important things for the program.
First of all they get a proven winner with a track record of on the field success. He has won over 75% of his games at the college level (75-26 overall) and has proven that he can compete against the biggest and best in the country week in and week out in the SEC. Upon his exit from Arkansas, Petrino had led the team to an 11-2 record just three seasons removed from a 5-7 finish in his first year.
Next season the Hilltoppers open up with SEC teams Kentucky and Tennessee back to back.
In a recent interview with Bishop, former Western Kentucky head coach Willie Taggart told him that in order for Western Kentucky to continue their success, they would have to hire a proven recruiter who could energize the fan base. Petrino does both. He brings an offense that is nothing short of exhilarating (to both watch and play in), and has proven that he can match wits with some of the best defensive coaches in the country. It's very possible that his offenses will put up video game like numbers every Saturday in the Sun Belt, and that in turn will pack the stands and garner plenty of attention.
The move will also play very well with recruits. Petrino is one of the top offensive minds in all of college football and his knack for directing offenses that put up gaudy numbers will attract players that the program would have previously struggled to attract before his arrival.
Not only will he bring a ton of exposure and excitement to game days in Bowling Green, but he will also solidify their status as an up and coming program, regardless of whether he stays for a season or a decade. There's no doubt that this is a huge hire for the Western Kentucky program.