If he goes, it’ll be a damn shame.
Occupations are filled will tumultuous relationships. It’s commonplace to have a certain level of disdain for those you work for or with. Jumble up a group of people with different backgrounds, beliefs, and ideas, and people aren’t always going to get along. But, there’s something more than just a bit odd going on at the corner of Marie P Debartalo Way and Bill Wash Drive.
Jim Harbaugh is the man. His recent success has reinvigorated a franchise and its fans that had been left in a near decade long depression. He’s reunited those that have watched and listened faithfully through the dark years, yearning for a return to prominence. Now, here we sit. Our flags are flying. Our jerseys are popping. We anticipate each week’s game with the passion that was instilled by our Niners of yesteryear. But, the Empire is in trouble.
Yes there’s something fishy going on in Santa Clara. There certainly is that. Look at history fellow Faithful. It’s nothing new. Unfortunate? Most definitely. But, the 49ers have a history of this sort of behavior with their front office and their head coach.
Just ask George Seifert. Follow up with an inquiry to Steve Mariucci.
In 1997, George Seifert was looking for reassurances in the form a new contract to be the leader of the San Francisco 49ers. He didn’t get it. He was replaced by Mooch. Seifert was only a two time winning Super Bowl coach that had been named coach of the year three times in his eight year tenure. Pound sand George.
The hiring of Steve Mariucci came out of nowhere. After one year of head coaching experience with the Cal Bears, a 6-6 season, the 49ers hired him as their lead man. To Mariucci’s credit, he succeeded with the 49ers. Well, in general standards he did. “In general” standards don’t apply when compared to 49ers standards though. After making the playoffs in four of his six seasons at the helm and with a winning percentage nearing 60%, Mooch was fired. It was reported that Mariucci lost a power struggle with then General Manager Terry Donahue. So long Steve.
Since the the firing of Steve Mariucci in 2002, the 49ers have had a string of lame duck coaches. Dennis Erickson (’03-’04) won 9 of his 32 games. Mike Nolan (’05- part of ’08) improved slightly taking 18 of his 55 games with victory. Mike Singletary (part of ’08-part of ‘2010) won 18 out of 40 his games as 49ers head coach.
Label 49ers Head Coach Jim Harbaugh what you will.
Difficult. Coy. Stubborn. Inadvertently informative. Cl0se-guarded. Grinder. Hard nosed. Enigmatic. Prepared.
This list could go on and on. Once again, label him what you wish. No matter what label you place on Harbaugh, the fact that he consistently wins football games trumps all. Well, at least it does for this fan.
It’s becoming quite apparent that those wins alone aren’t enough to appease the masses. Who exactly it does not please, I’m not fully sure of though. Is it Jed York? Is it Trent Baalke? Is it a handful of local scribes within the Bay?
Honestly, I’m not the one to ask. For me to purely speculate would be unjust. But, there’s clearly something to this. At times, perception is reality. And that’s where we’re at right now. Jim Harbaugh is not getting along with someone (or someones) within the 49ers organization. For the fans that throw their full support behind the man that brought us out of dark times, it doesn’t matter. Our opinion doesn’t matter. The passion we throw behind our team will hold minimal influence. Yet again let’s be honest. If and when Harbaugh goes, we’ll still be Niners fans through and through.
None of that makes this situation any less fortunate. For long time fans, we hold Harbaugh near and dear to our hearts. For the fresh 49ers Faithful, Harbaugh is all they know. In the business of professional, football success is rarely fired, but within the history of the 49ers franchise this is nothing new. All of this is confusing to say the least. Reports are thrown at us from every angle. My best guess is that Jim Harbaugh’s tenure is coming to an end. And that’s the speculative fact that makes me nervous. If you lived the post Mariucci and pre Harbaugh era with your heart on your sleeve, you would be too.