Sleep evaded me last night. My family’s health is in good standing. Financially, we’re above water…..barely. Overall, things in my live are at a a stable place. But, I tossed. I turned. There was little rest to be found. For the life of me, I couldn’t pin point why. Then, it dawned on me. It was Jim Harbaugh.
Scoff if you wish. Some say my passion for the 49ers goes just a little too far. Others would see it as normal. But I bought into that man as the leader of my franchise. He was the savior of the San Francisco 49ers. He brought the proudest of the proud of NFL franchises and restored its name from the bowels of the league. The things that he accomplished within four years in San Francisco/Santa Clara is nothing short of miraculous. The state of the 49ers franchise was that low. And now, he’s gone.
Stories, tweets and anecdotes regarding Jim Harbaugh and the 49ers front office have piled on top of each other. They’ll continue to do so for quite an extended time period. A new coach will be hired. A draft will be held. OTAs, training camp, and everything in between will take place. Eventually, the 2015 season will be upon us. Those stories will continue on. If the 2015 season happens to be a failure for the 49ers franchise, those “rift” stories will recirculate. Fans will become unruly. Players may even begin to vocalize their discontent with management. A recent and familiar downward spiral could reoccur for the Niners organization. So, consider this a challenge Faithful. Let’s move on.
Easier said (typed) than done, I realize. Yes, I feel betrayed by the very own franchise I love and support. This move to fire Jim Harbaugh is an act of treason in some circles. There’re constant visions within my mind of Harbaugh looking at Trent Baalke and saying, “et tu, Trent?” But as the famous saying within the athlete circles goes, “it is what it is.”
As extremely difficult as it seems, I decided to escalate my grieving process. I denied every media report that was out there all season long. I was beyond pissed off at those same members that told me the bond between head coach and management was beyond repair. Bargaining? You better believe it. I was making (realistic) deals within my own mind that kept Jim Harbaugh at the forefront of the 49ers for years to come. Turns out, they probably weren’t so realistic after all. Depression settled in rather intensely over the past three weeks. After last night’s sleepless night, I’ve decided to move to accepting the situation and move on.
Do I really have a choice? Would I ever give up my passion for the San Francisco 49ers?
The answers to both questions is a resounding no.
Torture me, toy with me, and negate me Jed York. I’ll still be here. I’ll watch every single game in every single way that I can. This team and this franchise is bigger than ownership. It’s about the game. It’s about the nuances of a Colin Kaepernick scramble, shoulder alignment, and laser-like completion that make my jaw bounce off the floor. It’s about the elegance of a nine yard Frank Gore run that should have been stopped for two. It’s about the pure raw athleticism of an Aldon Smith rip, bull rush sack for a 12 yard loss. The game of football excedes ownership. It evolves past that of a man’s ego. Football is Sunday (or Monday, Thursday, Saturday) tailgates. Beers in excess. Pantheons of food. Fellowship with your fellow man (and woman). Debate amongst the masses. The consummate chess game of football may have changed over the past few years, but the passion for your favorite team should never change.
Mine happens to wear red and gold. So, go ahead and have Trent Baalke hire me a new coach. If he fails it’ll be up to York to eventually fire that head coach and probably even Baalke too. But guess what Mr. Jed York……you can’t fire me. Because I’m all about the game and MY team. And I always will be.