Firing coaches when things go wrong is not the successful way



TOP OF THE TOWN­­ — Maybe I’m a little weird, but I want a professional sports franchise I owned to be consistent. Hiring and firing coaches when things go wrong is just not in my bag. I may be wrong in this, also, but today’s franchises are basically owned by billionaires who I think, fairly or not, are purchased as sort of a toy to enjoy. They want their franchises to be profitable. Money, after all, is the bottom line for everything in our society, but to them they are also toys to play with. I would hire a coach and general manager who would want to stick around for the long haul through thick and thin. A bad year or several bad years would not deter me. I would not fire the coach or general manager. I would instead work with them to improve what they do and what is needed to make the franchise into a winner. Being a billionaire, I would not worry about several down financial years. My franchise would not be a toy to enjoy, but a franchise to be built to be the best it can be. The Chargers today fired their coach, Brandon Staley, and general manager, Tom Telesco. What I would like to see is ownership hiring a coach and GM who want to be there for the rest of their work careers. The hires would have to be good, which should not be difficult (some suggest hiring Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh for the Chargers). The hire for me, though, would have to be somebody who would want to stick around as the franchise is built into consistent winner. It would take ownership to be involved in putting together a talented roster built to withstand challenges and injuries. In other words, a roster built for longevity. Franchises used to be that way. The Rooney family, for example, have owned the Pittsburgh Steelers forever, it seems. The Steelers have had 16 coaches in their 90-year history, but only three in the last 54 years – Chuck Noll, Bill Cowhert and Mike Tomlin since 2007. I doubt things will change and teams like the Steelers and the Seahawks where Pete Carroll has been the coach for 12 years, probably will continue to be outliers. Okay, that is enough for today.

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