Capitals

Paul Petrino hired as Idaho coach

201212031536561884635-p2.jpeg

Paul Petrino hired as Idaho coach

MOSCOW, Idaho (AP) Arkansas assistant Paul Petrino was hired Monday as the new head football coach at Idaho.

Petrino has produced some of the most prolific offenses in the nation as an assistant coach at several other schools, Idaho officials said.

``He is one of the top offensive minds in college football,'' school President Duane Nellis said.

Petrino replaces interim coach Jason Gesser, who guided the Vandals during the final four games after Robb Akey was fired.

Terms of his contract were not disclosed.

``All I've ever wanted to do was to be a head coach,'' said Petrino, who is the brother of former Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino.

Petrino said he would bring his high-powered offensive schemes to Idaho, and restore the program to the success it enjoyed two decades ago when he was an assistant here.

``People feared the Vandals,'' he said. ``This program has a great tradition.''

Petrino most recently served as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Arkansas, where this year he went through the firing of his brother, who was dismissed for hiring his mistress to a position in the athletic department and initially lying about her presence during an April 1 motorcycle accident, and the more recent departure of interim Arkansas coach John L. Smith, a long-time mentor.

Paul Petrino served as an assistant coach at Idaho under Smith from 1992-94, and later coached at Utah State, Illinois, Louisville and with the Atlanta Falcons of the NFL.

He was a standout quarterback at Carroll College in Helena, Mont.

Petrino was one of five finalists for the job at Idaho, which is struggling to remain in the FBS after the Western Athletic Conference dissolved as a football league. The Vandals will play as an independent next year, and are still searching for a conference to join.

``We want to stay FBS,'' he said, and the best way to do that is to win games and make themselves attractive to a conference.

He was not ready to announce any of his staff.

Petrino declined to place a timeline on winning.

``We will look at getting better every day,'' he said. ``Your goal has got to be a quick goal. I see guys getting fired after one year now.''

Akey was fired in October with the Vandals 1-7 at that point. Gesser was appointed interim head coach and the Vandals lost their final four games. Akey was 20-50 in five-plus seasons as head coach.

Petrino said his father, Bob, his brother, Bobby, and Smith were the three main football influences in his life.

He noted that his brother taught him a lot about football.

``He still is the most brilliant coach in football,'' he said of Bobby. ``He taught me so much about football, paying attention to every detail.''

Quick Links

Capitals are the class of the Metropolitan Division for fifth year in a row

Capitals are the class of the Metropolitan Division for fifth year in a row

You know what’s fun? Winning Metropolitan Division titles. 

No, it’s not as good as the big prize. The Capitals will never top their 2018 Stanley Cup championship. But winning a competitive division against their biggest rivals five years in a row? Pretty, pretty good. 

Washington took its fifth in a row officially on Tuesday when the NHL announced that the regular season had concluded thanks to the ongoing coronavirus. The Capitals just outlasted the Philadelphia Flyers with 90 standings points to 89. The difference over 69 games? One extra Caps game going into overtime for a single point. 

Credit to the Flyers for making a late run. No one was playing better in the NHL than Philadelphia just before the season was halted. Whether that carries over into the Stanley Cup Playoffs remains to be seen. 

But the Capitals should take pride in that streak. It’s hard to do in an age of parity. They play in a division where the Pittsburgh Penguins won two Stanley Cups in the previous four seasons. The two teams slugged it out three times in the second round. That’s the luck of the draw, and so four straight division titles -- and two Presidents’ Trophies -- meant just one Cup for Washington. 

CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE TO THE CAPITALS TALK PODCAST

It’s also rare to dominate a division the way the Capitals have for five years. The Anaheim Ducks won the Pacific Division title every year from 2013 to 2017. Prior to that, the Detroit Red Wings won the Central Division an astounding eight times from 2001 to 2009. It doesn’t get you a championship -- Washington won the expired Southeast Division from 2008 to 2011 -- but it does mean you played great hockey year after year.

And to do it in the reconstituted Patrick Division, where long-time rivals like the Penguins, Flyers, Rangers, Islanders and Devils joined with newer rivals Carolina and Columbus, makes it even sweeter. Add another banner to the rafters at Capital One Arena. The Caps are the class of the Metropolitan Division yet again. 

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.

MORE CAPITALS NEWS:

Quick Links

Nationals will not lay off full-time business or baseball employees amid coronavirus pandemic

Nationals will not lay off full-time business or baseball employees amid coronavirus pandemic

The Washington Nationals decided to use “partial furloughs” to keep their baseball and business employees at work through the end of their contracts or the calendar year.

The road map works like this:

All full-time business and baseball employees will receive a reduction in pay and hours ranging from 10 to 30 percent. If the employee’s contract runs to the end of baseball season -- typically Oct. 31 -- then these parameters apply from now until then. If the employee is not on contract, these reductions persist until Dec. 31.

No full-time employee is being laid off because of the economic impact from coronavirus.

An example: If a person works a 40-hour week, and has the 10 percent reduction in pay and hours, they are down to a 36-hour week at 10 percent pay cut.

The reduction scale slides. The highest-paid employees, like Mike Rizzo, are taking the largest reduction in pay. Then on down the line.

CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE TO THE NATIONALS TALK PODCAST

The Nationals deciding to do this now allows their staff to know what the future holds as opposed to wondering month-to-month what decision the organization will make in regard to their job status.

Major League Baseball organizations remain uneasy about their financial future in 2020 since the season has stalled. The league and its team owners are in the midst of negotiations with the MLBPA while attempting to find a safe, revenue-satisfactory path back to the field.

Meanwhile, teams across the league are assessing their non-player finances, and the approach varies. For instance, the Anaheim Angels decided last week to furlough some non-playing employees.

In Washington, no full-time employee will be laid off because of this salary adjustment.

USA Today was first to report the Nationals’ overall decision.

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.

MORE NATIONALS NEWS: