- Ivan Maisel, ESPN Senior Writer
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1. Louisville coach Bobby Petrino told Mike and Mike on ESPN Radio last week that he never should have left the university. Since he went to work at Louisville the first time, Petrino almost went to Auburn, then went to the Atlanta Falcons (a disaster), Arkansas (ended in disaster) and Western Kentucky. Petrino isn’t the only one to realize what he once had is worth having again. UMass rehired Mark Whipple, the coach who took the Minutemen to the 1998 FCS championship.
2. James Franklin, speaking at his introductory press conference Saturday at Penn State, made a point of acknowledging “the great Joe Paterno.” He also thanked Joe’s widow, Sue. All of which served as a cleansing wind after the last two years, up to and including Bill O’Brien’s exit rant. Joe Paterno wasn’t perfect. He would be the first to say so. But he didn’t deserve the blame shoveled on his grave. Here’s hoping Franklin kickstarted a belated recognition that Paterno never stopped being great.
3. No one at Stanford believes two-time All-America guard David Yankey will return to the Farm for a fifth year. Yankey is on track to graduate this spring and is expected to go in the second round. The jury is still out on Yankey’s classmate, three-year starting tackle Cameron Fleming. The aeronautics and astronautics major is leaning toward coming out. Another year of experience would push Fleming up the draft ladder. Over a career, it could mean a lot more money. But it’s tough to argue with a dream.