Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Life Isn't Always Greener

When I find a good thing, I stick with it.

If I were Katie Couric, for instance, I’d still be hosting The Today Show.

That’s why I watch the careers of football coaches Bobby Petrino (Arkansas) and Rich Rodriguez (Michigan) with such interest. Both coaches left jobs filled with adoration and money for jobs with more adoration and money.

But it hasn’t quite worked out that way – at least not yet.

Petrino left an Orange Bowl champion University of Louisville program for the Atlanta Falcons. He quit before finishing his first NFL season, becoming a punchline in the process. He’s now in his first unremarkable season at the University of Arkansas.

Rodriguez left West Virginia -- his alma mater, of all things -- to become the head coach of the University of Michigan. His new team has become a punching bag, losing to anybody and everybody, including the University of Toledo.

Until this past week, the schools that these two coaches jilted weren’t exactly setting the world on fire either.

It goes to show you that you better think twice before leaving a situation where you're successful, well-liked and well paid. Success is partly about being in the right place with the right people at the right time. The model can’t always be replicated across the country, like a McDonald’s cheeseburger.

But what do I know? If I were Tom Hanks, I would never have won an Oscar. I’d been too busy staring in the stage production of “Bosom Buddies.”

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