If there is a new Bobby Petrino, it might take a while to find out.
At his introductory press conference at Louisville on Thursday, the vilest of college football coaches and his new, or old, athletic director said and did all the right things while doing their best to sell Petrino as a new man. Heck, Louisville AD Tom Jurich even called him a changed person.
The only thing that was missing was that old Brooks & Dunn song, "Brand New Man," serving as Petrino's walkout song. You know, this one:
If it had been used, I probably would have been more receptive to their schtick.
Whether or not Petrino has changed is yet to be seen. The true test will come in a few years. For now, Petrino can cozy up to the Louisville boosters and supporters while pulling down $3.5 million a year, again, and keeping most other suitors at arm's length with his $10 million buyout.
But when the buyout begins to decrease, and people forgive, or forget, his previous mistakes, then the college football world will learn if Petrino has gained a conscience.
Until then, he will do what he does best. Win college football games. As always, that simple fact, more than anything, will make most forget about Petrino's personal flaws, which are plenty. He'll walk into his old job with a team that went 12-1 last year, and ultimately, Petrino will lead Louisville to more successful times. It's almost a given with this guy. He just wins.
But just as Thursday proved, no matter the character of the man, if he's able to win games, job offers will come. And Louisville will not be the last to offer one to Petrino. Rest assured, more will come.
In the past, he has been unable to keep from flirting and fleeing.
For now, Petrino says he has found his "destination job" in his second stint at Louisville. Only time will tell.