Arkansas Axes Coach Petrino Over Motorcycle Babe

Married dad put lover, 25, on college payroll

By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 11, 2012 1:35 AM CDT | Updated Apr 11, 2012 1:57 AM CDT

(Newser) – Arkansas Razorbacks football coach Bobby Petrino has been canned after the married dad of four confessed to having a volleyball-playing lover half his age whom he put on the college payroll. Petrino's secret life came to light following a motorcycle accident earlier this month while he was riding with lover Jessica Dorrell, 25. Petrino, 51, suffered broken ribs, abrasions, and a cracked vertebrae in his neck. He didn't tell his bosses that Dorrell was with him at the time, but they quickly found out—and connected him to her hiring and a $20,000 payment to her. Athletic director Jeff Long slammed the coach, hired four years ago, for misleading his superiors and the public, and damaging the reputation of the football program. "Coach Petrino abused his authority when he made a staff hire that benefited himself and jeopardized the integrity of the football program,” said Long.

Petrino, a former coach of the Atlanta Falcons, hired Dorrell, who used to play volleyball for the Razorbacks, as a student-athlete development coordinator last year, reports the New York Daily News. He apologized after his firing, and said he is now trying to "heal" his family, according to AP. "All I have been able to think about is the number of people I've let down by making selfish decisions," he said. "I chose to engage in an improper relationship. I also made several poor decisions following the end of that relationship and in the aftermath of the accident."

Arkansas football coach Bobby Petrino has confessed to an affair with Jessica Dorrell, 25, who got a college job out of the arrangement.   (AP Photo/University of Arkansas, Wesley Hitt, File)
Bobby Petrino talks at a news conference in Fayetteville, Ark., after being released from a hospital after he was injured in a motorcycle accident.   (AP Photo/Gareth Patterson, File)
Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long listens to a question during a news conference where he announced that Arkansas football coach Bobby Petrino had been canned.   (AP Photo/April L. Brown)
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