An impossible standard was set during the 2003-2006 seasons that made up the Bobby Petrino era 1.0. It only took one game without Petrino to realize just how tough living up to what Louisville did on the football field during those 4 years.
On August 30, 2007 Steve Kragthorpe beat Murray State 73-10. Louisville scored on the 1st offensive play of the game and the Cards set a school record for points, but a series of small mistakes that didn’t affect the outcome left the fans disgruntled. In a 63 point win, during the honeymoon of a new coach, in the season opener, following an Orange Bowl victory…..the fans actually booed. The “Bobby Petrino Standard” was impossible to meet.
Now, the man himself who created these lofty measures is re-building again at the University of Louisville and for the 2nd time in as many years after one season at Western Kentucky.
Bobby Petrino is known for his offense. Big plays. Big yardage totals. Lots of points. He admitted prior to the North Carolina State game that this year’s offensive production at the University of Louisville is new to him: Finding a way to win when his offense can’t move the ball at will against opposing defenses.
Taking a look at the chart below and Louisville in 2014 compares very closely to Petrino’s 1st year at Arkansas when the Razorbacks finished 5-7. Fortunately Petrino has the nation’s #1 defense backing his Cardinals and Louisville’s results are much more like Auburn 2002 when the Tigers finished 9-4 with an offense gaining just 17 yards more per game than the current Cards.
Petrino has always proven that he can find a way to move the ball and keep it moving. Louisville made strides last week vs. North Carolina State by eliminating a large number of its usual penalties. Aaron Epps in at Right Tackle, Michael Dyer in at Running Back, and a healthy DeVante Parker helped moved the offense forward, but there is still work to be done. It’s not going to happen overnight, the evolution will be slow, but sooner rather than later Bobby Petrino’s Offense is going to round into a fierce, balanced attack that keeps Defensive Coordinators up at night.
That’s the Bobby Petrino Standard, it’s just a matter of time until Petrino meets the measure he created against at UofL.
Total Yardage of Bobby Petrino Offenses
*(QB denotes when Petrino was a QB coach and not Offensive Coordinator or Head Coach).
|2007 Atlanta Falcons||300.8|
|2001 Jacksonville Jaguars||302.5|
|2000 Jacksonville Jaguars (QB)||355.6|
|1999 Jacksonville Jaguars (QB)||349.1|
|1997 Utah State||449.4|
|1996 Utah State||468.5|
|1995 Utah State||434.2|
|1993 Arizona State (QB)||390.2|
|1992 Arizona State (QB)||350.9|
*If anyone has Idaho’s Total Offense Numbers from 1989-1991 I’d be interested in those to complete this chart.