Love him or hate him, you have got to respect Jim Harbaugh.
He whines – but the dude wins, too.
In his first four seasons as coach of the San Francisco 49ers he earned a very impressive 43-18-1 record and led his team to three straight NFC Championship games, including one Super Bowl berth.
Yet, even before the Niners were officially eliminated from playoff contention by the Seahawks last Sunday, there were rumblings that this could be Harbaugh’s last season in the Bay Area.
Unless, of course, there is any bearing to the rumors that Oakland would love to pick up San Francisco’s sloppy seconds.
Raiders to make major push for Jim Harbaugh, per report – SB Nation http://t.co/4uA3oCrw2U
— Raiders watch (@Raiderswatch) December 14, 2014
So what gives? Why fire the guy who pulled your club out of the dumps and back into contention?
Are CEO Jed York and General Manager Trent Baalke really going to let personal issues get in the way of personnel issues?
Were they just too upset over this bad lip reading video?
I just don’t get it.
They say he lost the locker room.
Some of the complaints flying around the rumor mill sound awfully similar to the things that have been said about Tom Coughlin over the years.
Coughlin’s a grumpy old man who coaches like it’s the 1980’s and not the new millennium.
But Tom’s been fitted for a Super Bowl ring twice (Super Bowl XLII & Super Bowl XLVI).
For as much as what Pete Carroll’s doing in Seattle has worked, there are still far more coaches around the league finding success with an old school, hardnosed approach. And that’s why Harbaugh won’t be out of work for more than a couple days should management go ahead and axe him.
Let’s be serious here. Mandating a horseplay-free locker room is hardly grounds for throwing the baby out with the bathwater on the Harbaugh era.
The best bet for a successful Kaepernick
Coach isn’t the only guy in Frisco in the hot seat as plenty of pundits are wondering if Kaepernick’s best days are already behind him.
I’m personally not a huge fan of the guy but it he’s going to find success in 2015 and beyond, it’s got to be under Harbaugh.
If Kaep went backwards this season, under the coach that handpicked him as “his guy”, he’ll truly struggle under a new coach and a new system.
If the 49er front office believes that Colin simply suffered through a bad year and he is still the QB of the future, it only makes sense to allow him to put his best foot forward.
— 95.7 The GAME (@957thegame) December 9, 2014
Business and emotions don’t always mix
To me, the mere fact that other teams are chomping at the bit to fire their own coach for a chance at Harbaugh is a sure sign that the Niners are making a mistake should they look to get rid of him.
Often coaches are fired (and hired) not because of their accolades, or lack thereof, but because of feelings and personal relationships.
While team chemistry is vital to success, so is winning, and I find it hard to believe that what worked so well for Jim Harbaugh for three years is now suddenly defunct and ineffective.
Not to mention the fact that San Francisco may very well still wind up with a winning record – no easy feat in the NFL.
Counseling from unforeseen places
Famed Bills Coach Marv Levy once said, “The coach that starts listening to the fans winds up sitting next to them”.
But in this case I believe Jed York’s got all the advice he needs right there in his Twitter feed:
Yo @JedYork: Before you fire Harbaugh, why don’t you check with your dad about how well firing Mooch worked out for the 49ers.
— Jonathan Morales (@sosaysjonathan) December 16, 2014
@JedYork please put egos aside and don’t not Fire harbaugh please. He’s not the problem. Best coach we’ve had in years. Be smart please
— Richie (@RichieRainero) December 15, 2014
I don’t know what’s the 49ers plan to do if they fire Harbaugh. Dude is a great coach and mentor.
— Alex Banks (@KingBanks30) December 16, 2014
Hell, even Seahawks fans don’t want to see a Harbaugh-less Niner team:
— 12th Man (@thehawks12) December 15, 2014