Tag Archive | "Jim Harbaugh"

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Jim Harbaugh not planning to spend time with John socially before Super Bowl

Posted on 29 January 2013 by WNST Staff

HEAD COACH JIM HARBAUGH

 

(on coming back to win the NFC Championship game after being behind) “The thing we notice the most, not anything that was said or talked about, but just the reaction of the players on the sideline. Nobody flinched, no finger pointing. Just understanding what they needed to do.”

(on whether the 49ers have the advantage in the trenches) “That will be a huge challenge in the pass. Baltimore up front, the offensive line and defensive line are huge. It’s like 320 pounds of gristle across the front. We’re up to the challenge. I feel like our guys are up to the task.”

(on his game plan for Colin Kaepernick) “You’d like for your opponents to think of all the possibilities.”

(on why he decided to start Colin Kaepernick) “The way he played. Colin deserves all the credit for the way he’s produced, the way he’s acquitted himself in these games. Our team has great faith in him. The thing you see in his eyes is the competitive fire, the poise beyond his years.”

(on what the York family means to him) “Tremendously talented, special family. There’s a lot of finger prints on the success of this team. A lot of credit goes to the York family.”

(on his message to the troops overseas who will be watching the Super Bowl) “There’s so many things that we try to be about that you do every day. The biggest thing is that you lay it on the line. We try to emulate that, we try to be about that. It’s not in the same manner that you do, but it’s by your example.”

(on what Super Bowl XLVII means for his family) “I think it means a lot. I know they’re very excited about it.”

(on comparing this week to the week his team spent in Youngstown, Ohio) “There are a few similarities to our experience in Youngstown. The fact that we stayed in a hotel in preparation for a Sunday game. Had meetings there, bussed to another facility. There are some similarities.”

(on whether he is enjoying New Orleans) “Personally, for myself and our coaches, it’s a very normal week. Find ourselves in the film room, dark rooms, watching tape of the Baltimore Ravens. They’re very excited today to get out on the practice field with our team and meet with the players and continue our preparation for the Super Bowl.”

(on where he will be celebrating) “I don’t think that’s something you need to plan. I think that’s something that will be amazing.”

(on getting in the mind of an opposing head coach that he knows so well) “I haven’t considered that. Mainly, we’re just focused on our own preparation. Our expectation is to have a great day today. Great meetings and great workout over at the facility and continue our preparations for the game.”

(on the 49ers biggest challenge) “It’s going to have to be earned. Playing against the Baltimore Ravens, there are two big challenges. Number one is their talent and also their character. They’re a team that plays with a great amount of heart.”

(on Ray Lewis) “Ray Lewis is one of the greatest players to ever play the game. He’s a fine person, he’s a great football player, and a man I truly respect.”

(on whether he will see his brother before the game) “I believe we’re having a press conference together on Friday, so I would see him then.”

(on the press conference that his parents are having) “Yes, my parents are very excited and they’re very proud of their entire family. This is a special week for them.”

(on how he would rate his brother as a coach) “He’s a great coach. He’s very talented. I’ve said it many times, I think I’m half the coach that he is but I’m trying. That might be a little bit generous. I have less than half the experience he has, less than half the playoff appearances, wins, etc. We know the task ahead of us, we know the great challenge ahead of us.”

(on his least favorite thing about John Harbaugh) “I don’t have that on the tip of my tongue.”

(on his dad’s leadership style as a football coach) “This is the way I’d describe my dad: the song “Cats in the Cradle”, my dad was the direct opposite of that song and we both turned out just like our dad. When we were growing up, my dad would play catch with us, he would take us to games and, most of all, he believed in us. We grew up just like him.”

(on whether he has any good luck charms) “In terms of good luck charms, there aren’t any. We’re superstitious about not being superstitious.”

(on if he’s worried that his brother can read his mind) “No. Worried about a lot of things, but I have not noticed that he has any clairvoyant powers.”

(on who Ray Lewis’ first sack came against) “I’ve been informed that that was myself.”

(on whether he will spend time with John socially before the game) “Not that there is planned.”

(on how he feels going to the Super Bowl so early in his career) “We’re super excited about this. We know we have a great task and challenge ahead of us.”

(on how he feels facing his brother in the Super Bowl) “There’s no question that it’s very exciting playing against my brother, John. The thing I also think about is the San Francisco 49ers, our players. They’re my brothers. For he who sheds his blood with me today shall be my brother. I feel that about our players, I felt that and still do about our Stanford players and our USD players. This is their time. This game is about them playing with their brothers. I know the Ravens feel the same way and let the best team win. We hope that will be us.”

(on his relationship with Vic Fangio) “I would say this, Vic Fangio, Greg Roman and Brad Seely are the three best coordinators in all of football. Coached together with Greg and Vic at Stanford, and our lives have gone nothing but straight up since those two men joined our program. Had a chance to meet Vic when I would visit the Ravens when Vic was coaching for Baltimore. From the earliest conversations I had with them, I just had the most tremendous amount of respect you could have for a coach and his knowledge. When Vic became available, I’m sure I was the first phone call. I knew about it right away, as soon as it happened, and tried to convince him to come be the defensive coordinator at Stanford and he came. He left an indelible mark on the Stanford football program as he is doing with the San Francisco 49ers.”

(on playing in the Superdome after Katrina) “We’re happy to be here. I think this is one of the most historic places to have a Super Bowl. Great tradition of having Super Bowls and also want to thank the New Orleans Saints. We look forward to using their facility this week. We were in the weight room yesterday. Tremendous facilities and we appreciate their hospitality. A lot of gratitude towards the Saints.”

(on one thing he’s concerned about with his team this week) “We’re concerned, first and foremost, about playing the Baltimore Ravens. Understanding that task and that challenge ahead of us. The Ravens are a very talented team. Also, they have a lot of heart. They have a lot of character on that team by overcoming adversity week after week, playing at the highest level. Understanding that challenge ahead of us is ingrained in our minds. We want to continue to compete like maniacs.”

(on whether he second-guessed himself after naming Colin Kaepernick the starter) “I hesitate to answer those questions about that. All those questions and answers really lead to a lot of self-promotion. The main thing is, the way Colin Kaepernick has played is a credit to Colin Kaepernick and to his teammates. It’s their time. I’d rather answer those questions another time.”

(on whether he and John fought as kids) “I’m sure we did. As to who won and who lost, I can’t remember. I have a hard time remembering what I did last Tuesday.”

(on how he would console his brother if he beat him) “That’s a very interesting thing. Life is full of bitter disappointments. I think we all understand this going into this game. We both want to desperately win and be a part of a championship. The great thrill of winning is there, but we understand the other side of that. We’ll do everything in our power to not let that happen.”

(on where his parents will watch the game) “They’ll be in the stadium.”

(on his team) “Our football team is a focused team. They’re focused on unity they’re focused on winning, more so than any other team I’ve ever been around or observed. I think that bodes very well for us.”

(on what he remembers about the sack he took from Ray Lewis) “I don’t remember anything about that. I could make something up, but I’d be making it up. I don’t remember the play.”

(on being on the opposite sideline as his brother) “I think it will be a great honor. I said earlier, that’s my brother on the other sideline. I love him and care about him very much. He’s a tremendous competitor. It’s a great challenge and task to play his team. Also, my brothers are on my sideline.”

(on working under his dad at Western Kentucky) “It was a tremendous honor and opportunity to coach with my dad. It’s something I’ll remember forever. All those youngsters that played on the Western Kentucky teams, had a chance to get to know them and watch them compete. That was one of the great thrills of my life to watch those men win the championship.”

(on his memories of visiting Tulane for the head coaching position) “I had a wonderful experience interviewing for the Tulane job. I had a great opportunity. It’s a tremendous city and a fine university. I was really happy to have the opportunity to interview for that job.”

(on whether he watched the Super Bowls with his brother growing up) “Yes, we watched all those games. Watched all those Super Bowls, watched all those championship games. Probably like every other kid, we’d go out at halftime and play in the yard and pretend we were the Dallas Cowboys or the Pittsburgh Steelers or the Green Bay Packers or the San Francisco 49ers. I remember the fun and the competition.”

(on preparing Colin Kaepernick for the Super Bowl) “Colin deserves all the credit for that. Colin has worked extremely hard. He has studied extremely hard. He’s a wonderfully focused young man and competes like a maniac. He and his teammates have been preparing well for this game and that continues this week because we know the challenge and the task that’s ahead of us.”

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Niners LB Smith not sure if John Harbaugh as intense as Jim

Posted on 28 January 2013 by WNST Staff

LINEBACKER ALDON SMITH

(on why being named team MVP means so much to him) “A lot because you have a lot of guys on this team who are all-stars, who have made Pro Bowls consecutively. You have Patrick Willis, Vernon Davis, Frank Gore, I can go on. I come in my second year and I get the MVP, it means a lot.”

(on how he found out he was named team MVP) “We were all in a meeting together as a team. (Head) Coach (Jim) Harbaugh got up and just went out there and said it.”

(on his relationship with Justin Smith) “Other than our last names being Smith (and) us going to Missouri, from the time I stepped into the NFL, he was the guy who helped me out with everything. I worked out with him during the (2011)-lockout and he helped me a lot just coming in my rookie year. Then on the field, we just work well with each other. We feed off each other. We have a rhythm that we just developed together.”

(on why he has gotten less sacks recently) “A lot more guys coming to block me. I’m getting double-teamed a lot, triple-teamed at times, and then the quarterbacks are getting the ball out fast. Another thing that’s really cool about that is if I’m not making a play, a lot of times I’m getting double-teamed a sack comes from somebody else. I might not get it, but at the end of the day the stats still say it’s a sack.”

(on if he agrees that San Francisco seems to get stronger in the second half) “I do agree with that. We really work hard. We lift a lot. We take good care of ourselves and I think that all just transitions on. We’re not just a team that’s good in the first half; we play four quarters of good football.”

(on if he was surprised he was named team MVP) “Yes, a little bit. Like I said, there are a lot of guys that are good (and) a lot of guys that could have gotten that award. It was an honor.”

(on the quality of linebackers playing in the Super Bowl) “You could say (that) it’s the linebacker bowl, right? There are a lot of guys that can play. You have a lot of guys. You have Patrick Willis, NaVorro Bowman, Ahmad Brooks, me, Ray Lewis, (and) Terrell Suggs. There’s going to be a lot of talent out there. That’s where we are.”

(on the demeanor of Defensive Coordinator Vic Fangio) “Vic is a calm guy. He’s not one of those coaches that’s yelling at you and doing a lot of vocal. He gets the message across and everybody understands it. We take it and go with it.”

(on if he talked to Michael Strahan while he was chasing his sack record) “No, I actually talked to him before the Atlanta game on the field. We joked around about it. He was kind of giving me a hard time about not getting it. That’s about it.”

(on Head Coach Jim Harbaugh saying every team needs an Aldon Smith on it) “That’s an honor. Coming from Coach Harbaugh, that means a lot. It’s an honor.”

(on President Obama’s comments on the safety of football) “I think the game has been like it always has. It’s a physical game. Everybody plays hard. Guys get hit sometimes and that’s what we all know coming into the game. We all signed up for it. It’s not like we signed up and thought we were going to play tennis. We came out. We’re playing football.”

(on whether the team has talked about the potential distractions of New Orleans) “Really be responsible. We know what our goal is. Our goal is to come in here and win the game, not just to come down here and be at the Super Bowl. We’re coming down here to win the game. We all have that goal, so everybody is just being responsible and doing the right thing.”

(on losing in the NFC Championship last season) “We were so close last year. We were so close. We all know how we felt and we didn’t want that feeling again this year. I think every time we were all together, whether it was for our workouts, just our meetings or just hanging out, we all knew that if we ever got back to this situation, it was not going to end up like that. We want to be here.”

(on how Justin Smith helps him on the field) “It’s attention. He’s a guy that draws a lot of attention. He’s a great player and a Pro Bowl guy. With that, if they’re doubling him, they might single me up. Regardless, we’re all getting a lot of attention and one of us will be free or singled up and we’ll take advantage of it.”

(on the advantage of the two weeks between the NFC Championship and the Super Bowl) “I think the advantage is that you get your body healthy. You get your legs back. The only disadvantage would maybe be the little bit of momentum that kind of gets lost.”

(on the extra attentions he has gotten from opposing offenses) “I really just go out and play. I don’t try to think too much about what they’re doing. I have to play my game. I have to do what I do well to be successful, so my goal is to just go out there and play.”

(on what Randy Moss said to the team before they left) “Everybody respects Randy Moss. Everybody respects his word and what he’s done on the field. He really just kind of kept it simple. We all know our goal. We all know what we really want, so just make the right decisions and be ready to play on Sunday.”

(on what was being said after falling behind by 17 against Atlanta in the NFC Championship) “Not a lot was being said. More so, we all believed in each other. We all knew what our goal was and we all had that understanding that we wanted to come out of there with a win. I think that’s one of the things that propelled us to the win – nobody panicked, nobody second-guessed each other. We just went out there and put four quarters together.”

(on whether playing at the Superdome earlier this season gives the 49ers an advantage) “We’ve been here before. I don’t think that really matters at all. It’s a game. Every game is different, so we’ll see.”

(on the process of getting a sack) “You beat the guy in front of you. Then you go and make the big play. Everybody cheers and you feel good.”

(on Head Coach Jim Harbaugh) “He’s a unique guy. He still thinks he’s a player. He’s really intense. I don’t know John that much, but I don’t know if he’s as intense as his brother.”

(on Coach Fangio and his dry sense of humor) “Vic is a really cool guy. He’s just cool and he doesn’t say a lot. You’re right on his sense of humor. He makes jokes and they’re not really that funny. He thinks they’re funny, but nobody laughs. He gets his message across.”

(on how Coach Harbaugh acts like a player) “You catch him running across the field, throwing the ball and doing little things like he’s still playing. He’s a big kid out there.”

(on who the team looks up to as leaders) “I think we all lead. I think there are a couple guys that have been playing a long time that you can look up to like Justin (Smith) and  (Patrick) Willis, but there are a lot of guys. Everybody is a leader and that’s what makes us really good.”

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49ers, Ravens have never lost in Super Bowl

Posted on 28 January 2013 by WNST Staff

 

SUPER BOWL XLVII: BALTIMORE RAVENS VS. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

 

It all comes down to this.

 

On Sunday, February 3, the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers will meet in Super Bowl XLVII (6:00 PM ET, CBS) at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.

 

The game will mark the first time in any of the four major professional sports (NFL, NBA, MLB or NHL) that brothers – Baltimore’s JOHN and San Francisco’s JIM HARBAUGH – will match up against one another as head coaches in a postseason game.

 

“I guess it’s pretty neat,” says John Harbaugh, who has eight postseason wins in his first five seasons, tied with TOM FLORES for the most since the 1970 merger. “It’s pretty cool. But it’s really about the team. It’s about the players. That’s what it’s about. It’s about those guys. The more we focus on those guys, the better it is for everybody.”

 

The 49ers (5-0) and Ravens (1-0) are a combined 6-0 in the Super Bowl. San Francisco won Super Bowls XVI, XIX, XXIII, XXIV and XXIX. Baltimore won Super Bowl XXXV. This is the 49ers’ first Super Bowl appearance since the 1994 season. The Ravens’ lone Super Bowl appearance came during the 2000 season.

 

TEAM

SUPER BOWL RECORD

SUPER BOWL WINS
San Francisco 49ers

5-0

XVI, XIX, XXIII, XXIV, XXIX
Baltimore Ravens

1-0

XXXV

 

Super Bowl XLVII will be the second Super Bowl (Super Bowl XXX between Dallas and Pittsburgh) in which each team lost its Conference Championship Game the previous year. In 2011, the 49ers lost to the New York Giants in the NFC title game and the Ravens were defeated by the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game.

 

“It’s an unbelievable feeling to be in the Super Bowl,” says 49ers Pro Bowl linebacker PATRICK WILLIS, who leads the team with 19 tackles in the postseason. “I’m really grateful for this.”

 

During Championship Game weekend, the Ravens and 49ers became the first set of road teams to win the Conference Championships since 1997 (Denver and Green Bay). In the second halves of their games, the Ravens (21-0) and 49ers (14-0) outscored their opponents 35-0. The AFC (47.7 million viewers) and NFC (42.0 million viewers) Championship Games ranked as TV’s most-watched programs since Super Bowl XLVI.

 

“This is a great moment for our team, for the city of San Francisco and the whole Bay Area,” says 49ers Pro Bowl safety DONTE WHITNER. “Now for the big one in New Orleans. We’re going to be ready.”

 

The Ravens defeated New England 28-13 at Gillette Stadium in the AFC Championship Game. It marked the first time that the Patriots lost a home game in which TOM BRADY started and New England led at halftime; the Patriots had been 67-0 (including postseason). In the victory, quarterback JOE FLACCO threw three touchdown passes, including two to wide receiver ANQUAN BOLDIN.

 

“Joe Flacco has been great at playoff time,” says NFL Network analyst and former quarterback KURT WARNER. “That’s when he plays his best football.”

 

With the Ravens playing in the Super Bowl, this is the seventh time in the past eight seasons in which a team that played in the Wild Card round has advanced to the Super Bowl.

 

The win at New England marked the sixth road playoff victory for Flacco, the most in NFL history. His eight postseason wins are tied with BEN ROETHLISBERGER for the second-most in a quarterback’s first five NFL seasons, trailing only Brady (nine).

 

QUARTERBACK TEAM

FIRST FIVE SEASONS

PLAYOFF WINS

Tom Brady New England

2000-04

9

Joe Flacco Baltimore

2008-12

8*

Ben Roethlisberger Pittsburgh

2004-08

8

                                                                      *Currently in fifth season

 

“This is just one of those things you dream of when you are a little kid,” says Flacco about advancing to the Super Bowl. “You watch JOE MONTANA and those guys in the Super Bowl. So to be here at this point is pretty special.”

 

Flacco leads the NFL in the playoffs with a 114.7 passer rating, which includes eight touchdowns and no interceptions. In NFL postseason history, the only quarterbacks to finish a postseason with at least nine touchdowns and no interceptions are former 49ers quarterbacks and Pro Football Hall of Famers STEVE YOUNG (nine touchdowns; 1994) and Montana (11 touchdowns; 1989).

 

Veteran linebacker RAY LEWIS – who was named the MVP of Super Bowl XXXV – has led the Baltimore defense. The Ravens joined the 2010 New York Jets as the only teams to defeat both PEYTON MANNING and Tom Brady in the same postseason. Lewis, who will retire after the season, leads the NFL with 44 tackles in the playoffs.

 

“Ray Lewis is a guy who has been here since the beginning of this franchise,” says Baltimore safety BERNARD POLLARD. “He’s a guy who is ‘The Raven.’ We all respect him. When he speaks, everybody stops, everybody hears him. He’s kept the team together. He’s kept this organization together in so many ways. We’re all in this together. We want to go win this thing.”

 

The 49ers erased a 17-0 deficit in the NFC Championship Game to defeat Atlanta 28-24. San Francisco is one of only three teams to win a postseason game on the road after trailing by as many as 17 points.

 

“We fought hard,” says 49ers running back FRANK GORE, who rushed for two touchdowns in the win over Atlanta. “We fought and we deserved it.”

 

San Francisco’s COLIN KAEPERNICK, who took over as the team’s starting quarterback in Week 11, has guided the team to a 7-2 record (.778) in his starts, including a pair of postseason victories. In those nine starts, he has a 101.2 passer rating (13 touchdowns, four interceptions) and has rushed for 440 yards with four TDs.
In the NFC Championship Game, he completed 16 of 21 passes (76.2 percent) for 233 yards with one touchdown, no interceptions and a 127.7 passer rating. His 11.1 yards per pass mark was the highest in 49ers postseason history, besting the previous club record of 10.7 held by Joe Montana.

 

“He’s made great plays for us and stepped up big for us all season,” says 49ers Pro Bowl tackle JOE STALEY about his quarterback. “I’m excited to go into this next game with him.”

 

Kaepernick will be the fourth quarterback in the Super Bowl era to start the Super Bowl in the same season as his first career NFL start, joining TOM BRADY, KURT WARNER and VINCE FERRAGAMO.

 

QUARTERBACK TEAM

SEASON

SUPER BOWL RESULT
Vince Ferragamo LA Rams

1979

Lost to Pittsburgh, 31-19
Kurt Warner St. Louis

1999

Defeated Tennessee, 23-16
Tom Brady New England

2001

Defeated St. Louis, 20-17
Colin Kaepernick San Francisco

2012

Faces Baltimore on February 3

 

Kaepernick’s seven career regular-season starts are the third-fewest for a starting quarterback in the Super Bowl, trailing only JEFF HOSTETLER (four) and Ferragamo (five).

 

“If Colin Kaepernick plays well in the Super Bowl, he is going to change the face of the quarterback position,” says NFL Network analyst and Pro Football Hall of Famer DEION SANDERS.

 

In the postseason, Kaepernick has a 105.9 passer rating and has rushed for 202 yards. No player has ever posted a 100+ passer rating and rushed for at least 200 yards in a single postseason.

 

“Winning the George Halas Trophy is a huge accomplishment,” says Jim Harbaugh. “It’s another flag. You want to get as many trophies and flags as you can. We said at the start of this there are three Super Bowls to win. We have won two so far and have one more coming up.”

FINAL 2012 NFL STANDINGS

American Football Conference

East Division

Team

W

L

T

Pct

PF

PA

Home

Away

Conf

Div

Streak

y-New England Patriots

12

4

0

.750

557

331

6-2-0

6-2-0

11-1-0

6-0-0

Won 2

Miami Dolphins

7

9

0

.438

288

317

5-3-0

2-6-0

5-7-0

2-4-0

Lost 1

New York Jets

6

10

0

.375

281

375

3-5-0

3-5-0

4-8-0

2-4-0

Lost 3

Buffalo Bills

6

10

0

.375

344

435

4-4-0

2-6-0

5-7-0

2-4-0

Won 1

 

North Division

Team

W

L

T

Pct

PF

PA

Home

Away

Conf

Div

Streak

y-Baltimore Ravens

10

6

0

.625

398

344

6-2-0

4-4-0

8-4-0

4-2-0

Lost 1

x-Cincinnati Bengals

10

6

0

.625

391

320

4-4-0

6-2-0

7-5-0

3-3-0

Won 3

Pittsburgh Steelers

8

8

0

.500

336

314

5-3-0

3-5-0

5-7-0

3-3-0

Won 1

Cleveland Browns

5

11

0

.313

302

368

4-4-0

1-7-0

5-7-0

2-4-0

Lost 3

 

South Division

Team

W

L

T

Pct

PF

PA

Home

Away

Conf

Div

Streak

y-Houston Texans

12

4

0

.750

416

331

6-2-0

6-2-0

10-2-0

5-1-0

Lost 2

x-Indianapolis Colts

11

5

0

.688

357

387

7-1-0

4-4-0

8-4-0

4-2-0

Won 2

Tennessee Titans

6

10

0

.375

330

471

4-4-0

2-6-0

5-7-0

1-5-0

Won 1

Jacksonville Jaguars

2

14

0

.125

255

444

1-7-0

1-7-0

2-10-0

2-4-0

Lost 5

 

West Division

Team

W

L

T

Pct

PF

PA

Home

Away

Conf

Div

Streak

z-Denver Broncos

13

3

0

.813

481

289

7-1-0

6-2-0

10-2-0

6-0-0

Won 11

San Diego Chargers

7

9

0

.438

350

350

3-5-0

4-4-0

7-5-0

4-2-0

Won 2

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Connections abundant as Ravens, 49ers convene in New Orleans

Posted on 28 January 2013 by Luke Jones

NEW ORLEANS — With the San Francisco 49ers having already arrived in New Orleans Sunday night and the Ravens landing on Monday afternoon, much of the Super Bowl discussion will be dominated by the Harbaugh brother, but the organizations are linked in a number of other ways.

John and Jim Harbaugh are the first pair of brothers to be NFL head coaches, but a number of other coaches, players, and personnel share ties with the opposite side in some shape or form.

Struggling 49ers kicker David Akers never played in Baltimore, but he has played for both Harbaugh brothers as Akers worked with John Harbaugh in Philadelphia from 1999 through 2007 and has played in San Francisco in the last two seasons.

Baltimore’s No. 3 tight end Billy Bajema was selected by the 49ers in the seventh round of the 2005 draft and spent four seasons with San Francisco, playing in 61 games. Meanwhile, former Ravens linebacker Tavares Gooden has spent the last two years in San Franciso after spending the first three seasons of his career in Baltimore.

The coaching ranks of each team is strongly connected as well as San Francisco defensive coordinator Vic Fangio worked under both Harbaughs. Before joining Jim Harbaugh at Stanford in 2010, Fangio served as special assistant to the head coach and linebackers coach for the Ravens in 2008 and 2009. Current 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman was an assistant offensive line coach for the Ravens in 2006 and 2007.

Meanwhile, Ravens wide receivers coach Jim Hostler was the quarterbacks coach in San Francisco for two years before he was promoted to the 49ers’ offensive coordinator position in 2007. Baltimore’s offensive line coach Andy Moeller was a teammate of Jim Harbaugh at the University of Michigan from 1983 through 1986. Ravens defensive quality control coach Matt Weiss has also worked under both Harbaugh brothers as he was an assistant for Jim Harbaugh’s staff at Stanford for four years before being hired by Baltimore in 2009.

The connections even stretch to the front office as 49ers director of player personnel Tom Gamble worked as a pro scout for Baltimore during the 1997 season.

Three Maryland natives are currently playing for San Francisco, including linebacker NaVorro Bowman, linebacker Cam Johnson, and tight end — and University of Maryland product — Vernon Davis. Five Ravens players hail from California: linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo, tight ends Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson, and cornerbacks Asa Jackson and Jimmy Smith.

The Baltimore head coach will address the media for the first time in New Orleans Monday at 6:45 p.m. ET and will be followed by media sessions with quarterback Joe Flacco, linebackers Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs, running back Ray Rice, safety Ed Reed, and center Matt Birk.

 

 

 

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Jim Harbaugh not sure Superdome experience benefits Kaepernick, 49ers

Posted on 27 January 2013 by WNST Staff

HEAD COACH JIM HARBAUGH

 

(on the benefits of having Colin Kaepernick making his first road start in the Superdome) “What are the benefits? He’s played in this stadium, just as all our team has. I don’t know how much of an advantage that is. I can’t really put an advantage quota on it.”

 

(on if he tried to keep the routine normal this week before coming to New Orleans) “Not to go into the plan of what we’re trying to do and what we’re trying to accomplish, we got a good idea. It’s what we’ve done and it’s been successful so far. Our team has been really focused on winning, focused on the unity of the team. I think it’s really genuine. I think it’s the best focus on unity and winning that I’ve ever seen or been a part of. This week, we tried to make it like a normal week, being here on Sunday, in the city starting Monday like it’s a week leading up to a Sunday game is our plan.”

 

(on playing for Coach George Seifert and what he learned) “Quite a bit. It was a real pleasure to work with George Seifert, to get a chance to know him. I didn’t get on the field that year. One of the great things was being able to meet Greg Roman, who was an assistant offensive line coach at the time. I was just so impressed with his knowledge of football and the kind of guy he was. We struck up a very good friendship within the first couple weeks I was there. I made friends right off the bat. Later, getting a chance to work with him was a real great thing for us.”

 

(on if he has spoken to any other Super Bowl coaches to get any insight on how to prepare for Super Bowl week and what the special challenges are being a first time Super Bowl coach) “No real in depth types of things. I had a short conversation with Bill Cowher when he was out interviewing some of our players. I was on a radio show the other day and John Madden was on as well—a couple short comments as well. (The challenge is) that you haven’t done it before. Its uncharted waters for a rookie Super Bowl coach, but that’s exciting too. We have a great thrill and great desire to be in uncharted waters. Our coaches and our players have always relished that and strived in that type of environment.”

 

(on coaching a franchise that has never lost a Super Bowl and his plans for working with the team this week) “There is a great 49er history with our team and we’re proud of that. As far as working during the week, meetings, practices and that will be our focus each day. There will be weight lifting involved tomorrow and meetings and practices.”

 

(on Bill Walsh dressing up as a bell man before his first Super Bowl and if he sees any need to add some levity for his players and if they need anything to ease the pressure) “Dashon Goldson had a quote on our quote board about two and a half weeks ago that ‘We get fresher under pressure.’ That bodes well for us.”

 

(on what he recalls about the 49ers and their dominance in the 80s) “What I remember, I played against some of those teams. As you described, dominant. The organization has a tremendous history and we’re very proud of it. This is new business and our team is focused on winning a championship.”

 

(on how much of himself does he see in Colin Kaepernick in terms of his attitude and passion for the game) “I shared this with some of our beat writers a week and a half ago, but it’s true. It’s a true story. When Colin is running and the stride that he has, the gracefulness with his stride, the ground that he covers, how fast and quick he is reminds me of myself. Then I wake up. But when I dream and have visions of how I run personally, it’s the way Colin runs.”

 

(on how important Trent Baalke has been to the makeup of the team) “Very important. A key integral member. It’s a team effort. We’ve always said that. Everyone does a little and it adds up to be a lot. That’s been our approach.”

 

(on if he has been to a Super Bowl before and if so, what was his experience like) “Yes, I have attended Super Bowls in the past. For example, the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers two years ago. I was at this Super Bowl in New Orleans when San Francisco played Denver and there might have been one other one along the way. There might have been a couple other ones.”

(on him being a gutsy quarterback when he played in the NFL) “Can you spread the word on that a little? Can you get that out? Try not to keep that to yourself. I appreciate it.”

 

(on whether he ever second-guessed himself after replacing Alex Smith with Colin Kaepernick) “Alex had played a lot more than two good games. He had played 26, 28 really good games. I thought it was a unique situation. Viewed it that way when it happened. My experience had always been that when it comes to playing the best quarterback, or playing the quarterback with the hot hand, it was choosing between two guys that were struggling, at least in my own personal experience. That was far from the case that we were looking at at the time. Two quarterbacks that were playing extremely well. Made the decision that we thought was best for our team.”

 

(on whether he will allow Colin Kaepernick to make his own reads or if he will develop specific plays for him and the running game) “First of all, I wouldn’t categorize Colin as a read-option quarterback, for starters. Then, to answer your question, all of those things would be possibilities. We’d love for our opponent to consider them all. Colin is extremely talented at the read-option, he’s extremely talented throwing the football as well. There are a lot of options we could go.”

 

(on whether he considers this week as a distraction to the players) “I think it’s a good thing that we’ve done this, really the last two years. We’ve stayed in a hotel, had our meetings in a hotel and then go to a facility to practice and get ready for the game. Same approach as always, really. Enjoy the moment, enjoy the preparation. I think that’s what our team enjoys the most, the practice, the meetings and especially the competition. Gearing up for the competitive nature of a football game, a championship game. Very excited about it.”

 

(on what led him to decide to stick with most of the players that were there when he was named head coach) “Just watching the tape. One conversation at a time with the players, getting to know them. We realized that we had a lot of character and we had a lot of talent.”

 

(on whether he had talked to his brother about one day meeting in the Super Bowl) “No, not as kids. At Gettysburg, our conversations about facing each other were the November 25th game that we knew was on the schedule, the Thanksgiving game.”

 

(on how much credit he gives Colin Kaepernick for being the difference maker) “It’s been a team effort. Feel like there’s a lot of people that have a lot of fingerprints on this team’s success. Like I said, the team has been focused on the unity of the team and on winning better than any team I’ve ever seen or been around. Really credit that to the men in the locker room. They enjoy each other’s company. They like being around each other and they like competing. They hold themselves to a high standard in terms of that. Colin’s play has been outstanding. He deserves tremendous amount of credit for that. He, like the rest of the guys on the team, are focused on the opportunity to play and win a championship.”

 

(on whether he scheduled all the way up to the Super Bowl when planning in the offseason) “You definitely have a plan. You also have a feel, as well. Really, both of those things were at work.”

 

(on what Patrick Willis has meant to the team) “So much, Patrick Willis means to our team. He’s part of the fabric of the character of the defense and of the team. Very humble person. There are two kinds of people: the people that get the job done, and the people that want to take credit for getting the job done. It’s far less competitive in the second case. Patrick Willis is certainly a get-the-job-done type of guy. That just influences, and the rest of the team feed off of that.”

 

(on why he decided not to play it safe and start Colin Kaepernick) “I described it in my own personality, we did what we thought was best for the team. We did what we thought would give us the best chance to win games. That’s my personality.”

 

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Harbaugh pulls prank on parents during national conference call

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Harbaugh pulls prank on parents during national conference call

Posted on 24 January 2013 by Luke Jones

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Even as he prepares for the most important football game of his coaching career, Ravens coach John Harbaugh couldn’t resist the urge to play a practical joke on Thursday morning.

His parents Jack and Jackie Harbaugh and sister Joani Crean were in the middle of a national conference call discussing their thoughts and reactions to both John and Jim Harbaugh making it to the Super Bowl when “John from Baltimore” was recognized by the moderator to ask a question. The trio had been answering questions for nearly 20 minutes when the Baltimore coach joined the conversation.

“Yeah, a question from Baltimore. Is it true that both of you like Jim better than John?” the faux reporter asked the Harbaugh parents.

Harbaugh mother Jackie was ready to “come right through” the phone in anger before sister Joani figured out it was John on the other end of the phone. Jack then enthusiastically asked, “Is that John Harbaugh?”

The family members shared a few laughs and words as John complimented his parents and sister for how they handled an assortment of questions about the Harbaugh brothers and which team they’d be rooting for.

Jack Harbaugh revealed son John considered a career in politics prior to settling on the idea of coaching upon graduating from Miami University of Ohio in 1984. He joined his father’s Western Michigan staff as an assistant that fall.

The coach of the Ravens was asked during his Thursday press conference whether it was difficult to put his family allegiances aside to square off against his brother’s San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII.

“I don’t think you ever put your family aside,” said Harbaugh while laughing. “We have a job to do. All of us have a job to do. Jim has a job to do, all of his coaches, all of our coaches, all of our players. Everybody’s going to be focused on doing their job.”

Hear the entire conference call with Jack and Jackie Harbaugh and Joani Crean right HERE.

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Harbaugh offers historical comparison for feud between brother and Lions coach Schwartz

Posted on 12 September 2012 by Luke Jones

One of the featured Week 2 NFL matchups this weekend takes place between the San Francisco 49ers and the Detroit Lions, which has already sparked much discussion about the heated exchange between head coaches Jim Harbaugh and Jim Schwartz that took place in the moments following the 49ers’ win last season.

Both coaches have already dismissed any notion of a lingering grudge, but last year’s incident is sure to be a major point of interest when the teams play on Sunday night.

Hardly an objective third party, Ravens coach John Harbaugh was asked Tuesday if he thought there would be any more drama between his brother and the Lions head coach. Harbaugh is a well-known history enthusiast, so his reference was far more interesting than what you’d hear from the typical head coach.

“I don’t think there’s been so much attention paid to a handshake since Grant and Lee shook hands at Appomattox,” said Harbaugh during his Tuesday press conference, drawing laughter from everyone in the room. “You like that? It took a little time to think about that today. I thought it was appropriate.”

After the Ravens coach made reference to the conclusion of the Civil War, he then went on to ask reporters if they had any other suggestions of controversial handshakes over the years. One reporter referenced former Jets and Browns coach Eric Mangini’s conflict with Patriots czar Bill Belichick, but the room remained relatively quiet.

As for the example that came to my mind, I couldn’t help but think about the handshake between The Rock and John Cena leading up to WWE’s Wrestlemania XXVIII, but I decided to keep that one to myself.

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The Reality Check Friday Conversation-A Fictional Chat Between Alex Smith & Jim Harbaugh

Posted on 23 March 2012 by Glenn Clark

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Greyhounds Meet With Media At NCAA Tournament in Pittsburgh

Posted on 14 March 2012 by WNST Staff

THE MODERATOR: We’re joined by Loyola student-athletes.

How are you liking Pittsburgh so far?

SHANE WALKER: Love it.

ERIK ETHERLY: Great city. I’m a Steelers fan.

DYLON CORMIER: Been a great trip so far.

THE MODERATOR: Questions for our student-athletes from Loyola.

Q. The nation has found out about your coach, how personable he is, is that the right way to put it? Can you give us your memory when he went off on some rant or tandem that you said, I don’t know what this guy is talking about?

SHANE WALKER: I feel like he can do that any day. Anytime somebody asks him a question, it’s a 15-minute answer. He goes off on a tandem, you have no idea where he’s going. He’s such a great guy, you just learn to accept it and love it.

ERIK ETHERLY: I think the most memorable one for me is halftime of the Fairfield game with Bobby Steele and the Black Panthers. Nobody saw that one coming. He got his message across.

DYLON CORMIER: I think for me is him, the inch-by-inch statement he just came out with. He said, To win, we got to block and tackle, same thing in basketball.

Q. Dylon, he said earlier this week where you have a special relationship, he’ll challenge you, you’ll challenge him right back.

DYLON CORMIER: It’s kind of like he want me to do better, so he’ll yell me and tell me I’m not doing something better, just so I can do it even better.

Q. You’re known for your man-to-man defense. Also explain to us what your flex offense is like.

SHANE WALKER: I feel like our defense is so, so good because everybody has bought in. Years past, not necessarily everybody has bought in. Me being a senior leader, I demanded that from the rest of the team, and we all bought in. It wasn’t a problem.

ERIK ETHERLY: We also help each other out a lot. We have a great team in terms of being able to switch a lot of stuff so we don’t get caught up on a lot of screens and we always help on all of our screens.

DYLON CORMIER: I think we have a great inside presence with Shane and Erik, and also J’hared and Julius coming off the bench. So the two players has been effective for us this year.

Q. Shane, can you talk about the matchup with Ohio State. Has Jimmy brought up any history of No. 15 seeds beating No. 2 seeds?

SHANE WALKER: Yeah, he’s talked about Coppin State in the past. Was it South Carolina? Yeah, it was maybe 15 years ago, he brought that up.

He’s not really concerned about years past, he’s concerned about the team now and doing the best we can. He’s not really focused about other teams.

Q. Were you the Steelers fan?

ERIK ETHERLY: I was at the opening game when the Steelers played the Ravens. I took  a lot of heat for it, but I wore it at the stadium.

Q. When you break down Ohio State, what stands out offensively in terms of what you need to stop?

DYLON CORMIER: Their inside presence in Jared Sullinger and Thomas, their four-man, they got a great inside presence and a couple shooters where they kick it out. I think we have to prevent the ball from getting in the post as much as we can.

SHANE WALKER: When I look at them, they’re not very deep. They only play six or seven guys. I feel like we can run them. They try to slow the game down. We try to speed it up. Hopefully that will work in our advantage.

Q. You talked about coach. Were you tournament fans, seeing power teams getting beaten?

DYLON CORMIER: Not at a very young age. I remember George Mason went on a run and beat a lot of good teams.

ERIK ETHERLY: And VCU. That’s a local team, so we look up to them, as well.

THE MODERATOR: Guys, thank you.

We have Coach Patsos from Loyola. Make a few opening comments.

COACH PASTOS: Great to be in Pittsburgh, what a great town. My wife is from here. What a great sports town, what a great building. Other than the fact the Steelers play here, I really like it. We’re Ravens fans in Baltimore. A lot of the Ravens, Jim Harbaugh, people like that are following this game. But everybody loves Pittsburgh. Everybody says the same thing, what a great place it is.

I see my commissioner out there. We’re from the MAAC. Really have a lot of pride in our basketball league. We have two teams in the NCAA, which is great for us this year.

I was out with Dave Dickerson, Matt Roe, and Billy Hahn last night for about an hour, because we’re all family friends from Maryland. It’s a really interesting, happy time for me in my life.

I’m really proud of what the kids have done. This is about Loyola, what a great university it is. You don’t get here without the support of Jim Paquette, my AD, the president Father Linnane, things like that. So it’s a happy time for Loyola. Now we’re excited to play Ohio State, one of the great programs in the country.

Unfortunately Dave Dickerson knows me really well, so they don’t have to scout us because I run everything that we ran at Maryland together. They should know everything we’re running.

I’m happy to take questions.

Q. Obviously you know what it’s like to cut down the nets. Can you contrast emotionally the difference between being in the first chair here with a program like Loyola and having it done at Maryland?

COACH PASTOS: That’s a good question because both programs were the same when I got there. Obviously the depths of 1 and 27 is different from what happened at Maryland. However our climb at Maryland were when Duke and Carolina were winning NCAA tournaments. Georgia Tech had gone to the Final Four. So, in other words, I feel the same.

I feel great when we cut down the nets at Maryland even though I was the assistant, and I feel great cutting down the nets at Loyola as head coach. The climb was not always easy. You can always climb the first few runnings. You can be a beat writer, but you can’t be Lenn Robbins and have your own column in the widest circulated paper in the country. It takes a while to get there. It’s the last part that’s hard. You know that. It’s the last part of the journey that’s difficult.

Whether it’s at Loyola or the University of Maryland, I feel good we were lucky enough to make that last climb. I’m not sure I ever thought that would happen, at either place by the way.

THE MODERATOR: The 24-win season, what did that mean to the program? It was the first since you went to Division I 30 years ago.

COACH PASTOS: It was great because the last time we went to NCAA, Skip Prosser, who is a fantastic coach and great person, was here. They were like the 6 seed and won it. We’re in a great basketball league. To win 24 games in the MAAC, we have NBA players, we have coaches that have left to go on and be successful at a higher level. Kind of puts a signature on your program. When you win 20, it says something. When you win the MAAC, which like I said, I’m not joking about the New York thing, we love being in the New York league because you get a lot of attention media-wise. It’s a great basketball city with a lot of tradition.

Len Elmore and I were joking today, he played at Powell Memorial and I know that because New York is where the best players come from and everybody is a tough critic. If you’re successful there, you’re really happy.

Q. Talk about the concerns you have about Ohio State.

COACH PASTOS: I have major concerns about Ohio State. I just ran into Sullinger in the hallway. The guy is a monster. Thomas, the left-handed 6’8″ guy. Remember, Gary Williams does the Big Ten Network. Not that he would give me any inside information. I know what a great team Ohio State it. It’s an honor to play them. We probably have little chance of winning the game. Four minutes at a time, we’ll see what we can do.

We’ll still run and press against them. Ohio State wants to play their way. If you play their way, you’re not going to beat them. I think they can win the national championship this year, especially with Fab Melo being out. I’m talking as a fan. This has nothing to do with coaching. I see Ohio State have a chance to get to the Final Four because of their size. I like the kid Ravenel that comes off the bench.

But Craft is scary because he reminds me of Steve Blake. The Steve Blake, nobody ever thought he was that good until you played against him. He made shots, steals the ball, he’s quicker, smarter, you find out that he was the quarterback on his high school team, which scares me because you find out he’s a leader. Thomas is much better than I thought. He’s going to cause problems for us. Sullinger, you can put down 20-10, I just hope it’s not 35-18.

Q. Is there a hope with what you do defensively, Ohio State plays their starters a lot of minutes, that maybe you can try to wear them down?

COACH PASTOS: I mean, I can. But they’re four sophomores. Buford knows what he’s doing. We will try and press them. We simulated at little 20-minute scrimmage on Monday night. We took two-and-a-half-minute timeouts and my guys couldn’t believe how long they were. What you find out is they can rest. They can rest those two and a half minutes.

They’re used to playing minutes. It’s like one thing if you lose a couple guys and all of a sudden you have to play six and you’re not used to it. They’ve done it. He’s a great coach.

We will try and press ‘em, not as much to wear ‘em down, but probably to speed the game up. We need the game to go fast. You saw Iona, but they didn’t score at the end. Our league is a scoring league. We’re going to have to keep scoring. I want the pace of the game more than wearing them down. Is that fair to say? That’s what we’re looking to do.

Q. What you mentioned with Dave Dickerson, is there some element of surprise because a staff member knows you?

COACH PASTOS: Well, Dave, we just got together for like an hour. It was really nice to see everybody. But Dave really quickly says, I saw you’ve reverted back to the original Gary Williams, pressing on the make. He loved his time at St. John Arena. His daughter still lives in Columbus. He saw the pressing. He saw the 2 play, which is our version of the flex.

Gary Williams has had assistants like Rick Barnes, Fran Fraschilla, all these guys. I shouldn’t say this, but they’re probably more successful because they didn’t run all his stuff so much. But no (laughter).

Dave goes, You’re the only dummy that runs everything Gary did. Didn’t you learn? I’m like, Okay. Because Fran Fraschilla and Fran Dunphy and all those guys. I run like Gary’s stuff and I’ve kind of reverted back to it because I thought we could press a lot with eight guys this year.

We have an older team and they get used to the terminology, like 55′s, full-court press, and they all know it. Dave said, I just watched a half and I don’t have to scout anymore. He’s doing exactly what we thought he would do.

We probably play a little more zone, but we play Gary’s zone action, a 3-2, not a 2-3. It will be interesting. Got him 600 some wins and his name on the court, so I stuck with it.

Q. When you got together last night, what was that like? Did you devise a plan to get Gary off of Congressional this weekend?

COACH PASTOS: He’s doing Big Ten games. He’s part of the media now. Preparing to tear some coach apart. No, I’m just kidding.

Gary is going to Chicago to do the Big Ten. No, it was impromptu. Billy Hahn actually led us. Gary was the dad. Billy was the big brother. Dave was the middle. Actually Dave was probably more like Robert Duvall in The Godfather. He was really like sane. I was more like Michael. Billy was definitely like Sonny. I’m not Sonny. There’s no Fredo. Although Gary probably would have picked the same result for Fredo.

Billy kind of texted and said, Let’s get together and talk. Matt Roe was doing the radio for Syracuse. Matt Roe is one of the first guys that came to Gary when there was like nobody to play because they were on probation. It was fun. We talked about all the stuff, how much we accomplished. We laughed with everybody having a video guy, a weight guy. I said, My academic lady is with me, Colleen Campbell. I was the academic guy. Dave did the video. Billy went to weight lifting in the morning. It changed.

It was a good little time. It was nice to be with your family because in basketball that’s our family and we have a nice family.

Q. The guys that were up before said you mentioned the Coppin State win that happened across the street.

COACH PASTOS: I was over there checking it out. They’re taking it down.

Q. It’s a little sad.

COACH PASTOS: Not when you have this, it isn’t.

Q. What motivation have you used as a 15 seed going up against 2?

COACH PASTOS: That it can happen. 16-1 is not going to happen. 15-2 is going to happen once every three or four years. I actually think, my commissioner is here, he’s done a tremendous job with our league. We could have been a 14. They picked Iona as a 14. I don’t see us as a longshot 15. I can do the math. St. Bonnie wins, they pushed us down. That’s okay. Is Ohio a real 2? Unfortunately they could have been a 1 had they won Sunday.

It doesn’t matter. It’s 40 minutes. It’s 10 four-minute segments. We have to try to win six of those segments. We keep track of the segments, which we sole from Thad Matta when he was at Xavier. They have four-minute wars, 10 of them. We have to win six of them to win the game. That’s okay.

I think we have a chance, though, I do, because if we can get the game going fast, we have a chance. If they put us in the meat grinder and go slow, Sullinger goes to work, you can call me at 410, I’ll be in Baltimore Friday by noon.

Q. How much does the loss of Fab change the whole east region?

COACH PASTOS: The guy is a tremendous defensive player. I think in the  tournaments, like at Maryland we had Chris Wilcox. He scored the least. When he blocked Drew Gooden’s shots, Marcus traveled with us, a defensive guy like that can really change the game.

At Maryland I didn’t think we were ever going to win the title until we had a defensive guy like Chris Wilcox. I think they can make some plays. We don’t beat Fairfield if we don’t block some shots. You have to win a defensive game along the way.

Boeheim is a great coach. He’s setting everybody up because he has nine players. He still has eight good ones. That’s a tough one to lose because he’s a 7-footer, great player. It’s none of my concern. It’s an odd time for that to happen. I think that’s not good for a team. Like you can lose a guy three weeks ago and stuff. Like we have a guy, Anthony Winbush, who just had to have stitches Monday. I’ll tell you, he may play, he may not. He had 10 stitches. That’s a weird thing to have happen right now. But he’s not our best player.

Fab Melo is a big loss. Can Boeheim still win? Absolutely. He is one of the great coaches ever and a great golfer, a much better golfer than all the other coaches.

FastScripts by ASAP Sports

 

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Harbaugh wives talk about life in football with John & Jim

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Harbaugh wives talk about life in football with John & Jim

Posted on 04 February 2012 by WNSTV

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