Bobby Petrino: Polls, Rankings, Stars & Records

PetrinoACC2014KickoffFitted

Today the College Football Coaches Poll was released.  The Cards came in 36th.

Bobby Petrino has been a Head Coach 9 seasons at the Collegiate level during his career.  In those years Coach Petrino has won 8+ games in 8 of those 9 (88.9%) seasons, finished in the Top 20 in 5 of 9 (55.6%) seasons, 3 of 9 (33.33%) in the Top 6, and also 3 of 9 seasons in Bowls associated with the College Football Playoff (Orange, Sugar, Cotton).

That’s impressive.

Taking a look at Petrino’s teams using Scout.com’s Recruiting Rankings and it is easy to see the real VALUE of Bobby Petrino as a Head Coach.  Using 4-year averages (2 years for 2003 Louisville, and 3 years for 2004 Louisville because historical data prior doesn’t exist) Bobby Petrino has never coached a team with a 4-year Average Ranking of better than 25.25….that year (2011) Petrino’s Arkansas Razorbacks won the 2012 Cotton Bowl and finished #5 in the Nation. That 2011 4-year stretch is also the best average Player Star rating that Petrino has had at his disposal as well at 2.825.

Why is that important?  Louisville’s Average 4-Year Star Rating going into the 2014 season will be THE HIGHEST average player 4-year stretch that Bobby Petrino will ever have the pleasure of working with at 2.9425.  In 2004 that metric was 2.300, in 2006 2.465…both teams finished #6 in the nation and combined went a total of 23-2.  Also both at Louisville & Arkansas Petrino’s recruiting improved significantly year to year as both programs’ profile continued to rise.

However, some of these ratings are difficult to really place value upon.  Recruiting rankings & evaluation has expanded among the scouting services and so has Louisville’s place within the landscape in college football.  When Petrino took the helm at Louisville in 2003 the Cards were a Conference USA school and since that time the program has elevated to the Big East, the American, and now the Atlantic Coast Conference. It’s quite a rise.

Also, like it or not recruiting rankings and player evaluations can be influenced by reputation.  Players from well-known areas and high schools going to traditional College Programs will be rated higher than an unknown Safety who didn’t camp very much, from say a place like Port St. Lucie?

Bottom line, scouting is more important than recruiting rankings.  John L. Smith understood that, Charlie Strong exercised that, and Bobby Petrino knows that today. In the end, Louisville has recruited VERY well the last 5 seasons and thanks to some small class sizes the Rankings are down……but the stars are UP!  And Bobby Petrino has never had a roster with as many average stars in his career as the one he will coach in 2014.

What’s the expectation for the 1st (5th) year Head Coach for the Cards?  Who knows.  But I’d bet on Petrino winning 8+ games, lighting up the scoreboard, and absolutely obliterating whoever has the courage to jump on the bird.

4-year Avg Recruiting Ranking Avg 4-Year Stars Final AP Rank Record Bowl/Result
2003 Louisville 57th *2 years 2.365 NR 9-4 Lost GMAC Bowl (Miami OH)
2004 Louisville 56th *3 Years 2.300 #6 11-1 Won Liberty Bowl (Boise St.)
2005 Louisville 52.75 2.3925 #19 9-3 Lost Gator Bowl (Virginia Tech)
2006 Louisville 42.75 2.465 #6 12-1 Won Orange Bowl (Wake Forest)
2008 Arkansas 30.5 2.7125 NR 5-7 No Bowl
2009 Arkansas 27.75 2.755 NR 8-5 Won Liberty Bowl (East Carolina)
2010 Arkansas 29.5 2.7825 #12 10-3 Lost Sugar Bowl (Ohio State)
2011 Arkansas 25.25 2.8525 #5 11-2 Won Cotton Bowl (Kansas St)
2013 Western Kentucky 105.5 2.1025 NR 8-4 No Bowl
2014 Louisville 42 2.9425 ? ? ?

Meanwhile….THE BLACK IS BACK!!!!

 

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