Sunday, September 23, 2007


When Coach Bobby Petrino decided to leave the University of Louisville football team last year to become the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons, he was roundly excoriated as a modern day Benedict Arnold. How dare he leave, we 'Ville fans questioned, after he had been given such a golden opportunity to shine on a national stage? Where was his sense of loyalty?

Enter Coach Steve Kragthorpe, an up-and-coming head coach from Tulsa with experience in the NFL. Hand-picked by mastermind Tom Jurich, it was widely felt that all Kragthorpe had to do was to come into Louisville and hold onto the reins while Louisville glided to another BCS victory. Only it didn't quite work out that way.

The new-look Cardinals have stumbled out to a terrible beginning. Shockingly bad, to tell you the truth. After unimpressive victories over outmanned Murray State and Middle Tennessee, Kragthorpe's Cardinals lost to....gulp...Kentucky. Yesterday, they dropped a shocking loss to 0-3 Syracuse, a game in which the Cardinals were favored by almost 37 points at home. The word is now officially out: This team is not as good as advertised. Far from it. And for some, that means that heads must roll.

The chants and internet missives have begun. Many Louisville fans want Coach K gone, and gone right now. The evidence has been weighed, the verdict is in, and many in the U of L jury seem ready to sentence Coach K to walk the plank. When we consider the alleged "betrayal" by Coach Bobby Petrino last year, this rush to judgment strikes me as rather ironic.

Don't get me wrong. I am as flabbergasted about the poor start for U of L as anyone else is. I am bummed, steamed, whizzed and downright honked off. I am very concerned. Still, it seems strange to me that, after expecting uncompromising loyalty from Bobby Petrino, we are now ready to scrap the career of our new coach after only four games.

I wonder: What does that say about us?


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