Letting Jim Harbaugh Coach Elsewhere Will Be a Decade-Long Regret at Halas Hall

| December 12th, 2014


Here what’s I know about Jim Harbaugh’s coaching career.

His first head coaching job was at San Diego and he led the Toreros to program bests in every conceivable way.

His second head coaching job was at Stanford where the Cardinal had been a Pac-10 doormat since Ty Willingham left town. He won 4 games. Then he won 5 games. Then he won 8 games. Then he won 12 games. 12 games. At Stanford. A university that had never won 11 in the entirety of their footballing existence. (And before you credit Andrew Luck, go take a look at John Elway’s W-L record at Stanford.)

His third head coaching job is at the San Francisco 49ers. He is 43-17-1 and has appeared in 3 NFC title games and a Super Bowl. In the 8 seasons prior to his arrival, the Niners did not record a single winning season.

Jim Harbaugh isn’t a good head coach. Jim Harbaugh is one of the best coaches in the entire world of football and he is available. That does not happen often. It’s happening now. The Bears will regret it for many years if they don’t become serious players for his services.

Harbaugh will win wherever he goes. But he makes more sense in Chicago. Why?


For those who think this is an underrated element, I think you’re dead wrong. Chicago is unreceptive to head coaches they perceive as “the other”. Lovie Smith used his tortoise-slow delivery and Big Sandy drawl to disguise his arrogance and that two-step was something Chicago never became comfortable with. Marc Trestman isn’t Canadian but he might as well be. His approach to media, his head coaching resume and his hair all make fans slightly uncomfortable with him.

Harbaugh is a coach’s kid. He played football in the midwest for Michigan, the Bears, the Colts. He had legendary sideline squabbles with Mike Ditka, which perhaps sadly gives a man certain credence in Chicago. Most importantly we know the media won’t affect Harbaugh.


You know what this means.


Harbaugh’s teams have always been defined by the following: run it down the opponent’s throats and make big plays in the passing games. Is any team in the league better equipped for that approach?

Is this move going to be made? Probably not. Harbaugh will go to Oakland or the Dolphins or the Jets and win there. The Bears will sacrifice their opportunity to acquire one of the sport’s best leaders for one more useless year under Marc Trestman. The Bears should not only bring Harbaugh to Chicago. They should bring whatever GM and quarterback he wants as well.

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