Bobby Petrino’s father went to the press in Kentucky about his son’s desire to return to Kentucky. When the University of Kentucky went a different direction and found Mark Stoops at Florida State University for their opening, Petrino went south as well, but just not as far, and headed south to Bowling Green, Kentucky for his newest home as Western Kentucky head coach.
At a press conference of 400-500 people, Western Athletic Director Todd Stewart announced Bobby Petrino would replace Willie Taggert as the head coach of the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, who left to take the same position at the University of South Florida.
Petrino was the “first and only candidate to replace Taggert”, said Stewart and despite Petrino’s infractions at the University of Arkansas and University of Louisville, “This is the United States of America and this is a country of second chances.”
Petrino, is said to have been very open with WKU administration about the situation at Arkansas and said when he talks to the players “it’s going to be about getting up and telling them what happened… it’s all about knowing the difference between right and wrong, and I chose the wrong.” He went on to say that he considered the move to Bowling Green a “coming home” of sorts.
As the highest paid coach in the Sun Belt Conference, Petrino will make $850,000 a year.
Western Kentucky will play Kentucky in Nashville to open the 2013 season.