Maybe I’m a little old fashioned but I like an organization, a team or a player that is classy.
I respect an organization that respects itself and forces all those within it to adhere to policies and codes that promote positivity, professionalism and dignity so much so that observers aspire to be part of who you are.
I like a team that collectively dresses like professionals, to and from a game; a team that recognizes, appreciates and accepts responsibility for the message that they send in the way they carry themselves, articulate to the media and through their body language.
I admire players who put their team first; those who quickly distribute praise but accept blame even if solely responsible for the success and barely responsible for the failure. I admire players who set standards for their teammates; who through their behavior, actions and attire establish a desirable benchmark.
And then there’s the San Francisco 49ers…
When the Baltimore Colts escaped out of town in the middle of that frosty spring night in 1984, I soon thereafter adopted the 49ers as my team until the Ravens came along. They were successful, had players with whom you could easily identify and were led by the classy Eddie DeBartolo, Jr. They were THE model franchise.
Now thanks to a front office that seemingly doesn’t care anymore about class, they’ve enabled a spoiled, classless brat like Jim Harbaugh who dresses like a janitor and behaves on their sideline like a 3-year-old who just had their lollipop snatched away.
The behavior trickles down and it grips the team – influences them to act like punks on the field and collectively dress like they just left the gym to and from the field.
Who has more punks than the San Francisco 49ers?
Jim Harbaugh might be a good coach – a very good coach.
But when they handed out class to the Harbaugh family, he obviously overslept – probably in that same black polo and khakis that he wears again and again.
He is who he is – a clown (and that’s an insult to clowns)
Perhaps some of you old enough to remember may recall that he sucker punched Jim Kelly before a game because the former Bills quarterback turned analyst criticized Harbaugh’s play.
He’ll never change. Even brother John laughs off his antics as little brother Jim just being Jim.
The blame lies with the enablers – those 49ers’ executives who look the other way because of Jim’s winning record.
Well winning isn’t everything.
One day we’ll see how Jim Harbaugh’s team handles losing. Then their true colors will shine through.
And I hope it starts on Sunday.
Featured image courtesy of Washington Post