LOS ANGELES (LALATE) – The Jessica Dorrell and Bobby Petrino wreck scandal didn’t derail Arkansas Razorbacks football training this weekend. Jessica Dorrell photos continue to dominate national news as more details surface about Bobby Petrino’s wreck and affair during marriage to wife Becky Petrino. But Razorbacks football practice continued uninterrupted this weekend with the format of that practice continuing reportedly exactly as if Petrino was there.
On Friday, Razorbacks football players took to their field. They also met with local news media. Officials told news that the players are reportedly both confused and bothered about the scandal. They also have an uncertainty about the future for the program in the next few weeks.
Jeff Long was swift to fire Bobby Petrino. But Long has yet to tell news of his anticipated replacement for Petrino. Local news puts Paul Haynes, Tayer Johnson, and Tim Horton among the possible replacements. Haynes is the team’s defensive coordinator, Johnson the assistant head coach, and Horton fulfills multiple positions currently including recruiting coordinator.
Many officials tell news that their relationship with Petrino was purely professional. As a result, the extent to which the scandal erupted into a sea of personal matters – including text messages, gifts, bike rides, and other social interactions – has left many shocked.
Among them was Long. On Friday, Long’s April 10 termination letter to Petrino was released. In it, Long said that the scandal was far bigger than anyone had anticipated. Long claimed the improper conduct, which started as simply lies about a bike wreck, suddenly ballooned.
Soon an affair surfaced, one that dated back to September with thousands of messages being sent by an Arkansas-provided Petrino cellphone to Dorrell. Then there was the improper hiring by Petrino for a job with him, never disclosing her to be his alleged mistress during the process. And finally, Petrino gifted Dorrell twenty-thousand dollars with which she went out and bought a new car.
Long said the scope of the wrongdoing was simply too much. It was no longer just a bike wreck, it was volumes of details. “Your conduct and actions in this matter have generated voluminous negative media stories and opinions, within Arkansas and nationally, that have harmed the reputation of the University of Arkansas and our athletics programs.” He added “We are now faced with the task of restoring the reputation of our institution and our athletics programs that many individuals and teams have worked hard to build over the years.”
Petrino was portrayed by Long as hiding his affair down to the final moment. Long reveals to news that he found out about the affair only minutes before the public did. He said that, not until minutes before the ASP report was issued to news, did Long find out. “Despite having multiple opportunities to inform me that Ms. Dorrell, a current University employee under your direct supervision, had been a passenger on your motorcycle, you waiting until 3:12 on Thursday April 5, 2012 just minutes prior to the public release of the accident report by the Arkansas State Police to tell me.” He added “Again, you actions reflect a deliberate failure to be forthcoming about this matter”.
Long fumed that Petrino only told him details when he had to, when the public would be learning about the same. He stated that “you informed me only when you knew I would learn about it release of the [ASP] report.”
Long didn’t hold back. He said even the bike ride was improper. “In light of the fact that Ms. Dorrell was an employee in the University’s football program at the time of the accident, I believe it was highly inappropriate to take her for a motorcycle ride given your previous … relationship”. He added “You actions reflected poor judgment.”
Long understood that the matter must be handled swiftly. Long even told Petrino that he anticipated that the termination letter would probably be released publicly after Petrino got it. “Due to the compelling public interest in this matter, the University request your sent to release this correspondence to the public immediately. Please call or text me to know whether the University may release this letter to the public immediately.”
Long ultimately told Petrino that he himself was disappointed by what transpired. Long had previously given Petrino a seven year deal, worth roughly three million dollars per year with an eighteen million dollar buyout provision. “I was very excited when we completed your most recent Employment Agreement and I looked forward to a bright future.” Petrino was fired with cause, while Dorrell is currently on paid leave.
Bobby Petrino, Jessica Dorrell