Former NBA player Charles Barkley is one of the most famous University of Auburn alumni and he is never short on opinions. During the universities head coaching search in 2008, Barkley was a big advocate of hiring Turner Gill over Gene Chizik. So with Chizik now getting the can, it should come as no surprise that Sir Charles is once again campaigning for an Auburn head coaching candidate.
This time, Barkley is campaigning for controversial head coaching candidate Bobby Petrino. Barkley told NBC 38′s Christina Chambers that Auburn needs to get it right and it starts with Petrino.
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“I understand he has some baggage but he’s a hell of a coach, and we shouldn’t try to play judge and jury and moral judge. He made a mistake, he admitted to his mistake, we have to hire a guy who we know can win, and that’s him,” Barkley told NBC 38.
“It’s unfortunate about what happened to (former coach Gene) Chizik, but it’s time for Auburn to move on.”
Petrino had a less than admirable end to his career with the Arkansas Razorbacks, but there is no denying the man can coach. To validate the job Petrino did in Arkansas, all you need to do is look at the team’s lack of success this season.
Other head coaching candidates for Auburn include TCU’s head coach Gary Patterson, St. Louis Rams head coach Jeff Fisher, Penn State head coach Bill O’Brien, Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin, though Petrino is considered the front-runner for the job.