Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.
Jon Gruden to stay with ESPN; is Belichick 'Bozo the Coach II?'
Still have two more days to burn off so I can begin the long march to spring uninterrupted, but figured I'd offer a post to let you know I'm still alive.
First, ESPN announced a contract extension with Jon Gruden that I am told means what it says it means:
That he is enjoying his new job and lifestyle and is in no hurry to get back to coaching - not in 2010 and perhaps well beyond. ESPN is thrilled.
I'll let Glauber figure out what this means to the NFL coaching carousel this coming offseason.
Speaking of coaches turned anaylsts, Tony Dungy passed his latest test on NBC Sunday by begging to differ with former counterpart Bill Belichick on his instantly infamous fourth-down attempt in Indy:
"You have to punt the ball in that situation," he said. "As much as you may respect Peyton Manning and his ability, as much as you may doubt your defense, you have to play the percentages and punt the ball."
Even better was the reaction of one of Belichick's former field leaders, Rodney Harrison:
"He's made a lot of great coaching decisions, but this is the worst coaching decision that I've ever seen Bill Belichick make."
Yikes! Belichick's decision reminded old-timers like me of a similar move by Barry Switzer in a Cowboys-Eagles game in 1995.
But while Belichick's move was statistically defensible, Switzer's was even stranger because it came with the score tied.
(New York Post headline the next day: "Bozo the Coach.")
The Cowboys were playing the Giants the following week, so the Giants beat reporters had Switzer on a conference call that Wednesday.
It was an all-time classic. Switzer conducted the entire interview while chewing on a sandwich for lunch, mumbling as he spoke.
A few weeks later he won the Super Bowl.