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Mike Nolan on how Mike Singletary got the job in San Francisco

Post by News Tribune Staff on Oct. 24, 2008 at 4:08 pm with 13 Comments »
October 24, 2008 4:08 pm

Former Niners coach Mike Nolan was on Sirius radio with Adam Schein and John Riggins, explaining his firing and his replacement by Mike Singletary:

"When they had told me I was fired, which Jed York had done, there was a lot of speculation about who did what. But Jed York was the one that told me and he told me in a one-on-one conversation in my office. Anyhow, I said, ‘Who’s the replacement?’ And they had mentioned Mike Singletary and I had said that I felt that was a good choice from the standpoint of keeping the team together. Because, you know, when they have things like this that go on and you pick an offensive or a defensive coordinator, not that either one of those guys even would’ve taken it, because I don’t think any of the coaches, you know, I think I have a very loyal bunch of coaches. I think that sometimes you get a division. All of a sudden players start to say, well, ‘my guy,’ ‘your guy’ and all that. So I thought Mike was a good neutral choice. Obviously, Mike Martz has got tremendous experience and could very well have handled the job. I mean, it’s not a question of handling the job, but they just felt, that’s who they had suggested to me. So I said, ‘Look it, you need to talk to Mike if you haven’t talked to him yet, because to let me go and not have somebody in line, I don’t know how that’s going to fare for you if he says no.’ So, anyhow, they spoke with Mike and I said, ‘Look it, I would imagine Mike’s going to want to come talk to me.’ So Mike did. He came down after they spoke with him and he came to me and we sat down and I said, ‘Well, what’s up?’ And he told me what they all said, and he said, ‘I can’t do it.’ He says, ‘You’re my friend and I can’t do that.’ And I said, ‘Well Mike,’ I said, by choice I chose a table other than my desk to sit down with Mike in my office, and I pointed to the desk and I said ‘Mike, I just want to tell you something,’ I said, ‘You see that desk, there’s no one sitting in it.’ I said, ‘I’m not the coach of the San Francisco 49ers. Right now they don’t have a coach.’ I said, ‘So for you to say you can’t do it because you’re going to take my job, you’re not taking my job.’ I said, ‘That job’s already been vacated.’ I said, ‘Mike, you need to take that job.’ I said, ‘We came in here together. You know how important these players are to us and I think you’d do a hell of a job of keeping them together because right now that’s the most important thing, is just keeping them together.’ It’s not X’s and O’s, it’s not new ideas, everything’s kind of on autopilot as far as the schedule goes. I said, ‘They need somebody to lead them.’ I said, ‘I think you’d do the best job because of your position with this team. You are the assistant head coach.’ I mean, we exchanged a couple more times where he said he didn’t feel right about this and that, but I just told him, I said, ‘Look Mike, they don’t have a coach, alright? You’re not taking Mike Nolan’s job. You’re taking the 49ers job and they don’t have a coach.’ And so one thing led to another and it was emotional and it was not easy, but that’s kind of proof in the pudding, that’s how it went down."

Leave a comment Comments → 13
  1. TechWorlds says:

    You left out the part where Nolan says.. “Look Mike, ya gotta take this job. The Hawks are coming to town and you will get an instant win.”

  2. Gimme and effin’ break. Polamalu is right–this is turning into a panzy league. Even Singletary? WTF? Will someone get them a hankie?

    Nolan, you posted an absolutely horrendous record and received a gift to get 1/4 of this season in your checkbook.

    Singletary, don’t get too teary-eyed. Your ass is gone in 9 weeks to make room for the Big Show.

    Somehow this is how I imagine a soccer coach getting fired…

  3. Tillman, not everyone in the world is a farging shark. Loyalty means something to someone. Just because you cannot see yourself giving a damn means everyone has to. Just shows you never had or deserved respect.

  4. I don’t like the 9’ers but like Nolan….you can only win if you have the right horses…as is the case with the Hawks this year…Coach Holmy is not “dumber” cause players got hurt….and Mr Nolan is not a dumb man cause he did not have good players or a good owner…

  5. This wall of text could use some formatting, maybe a paragraph break or two would suffice.

  6. sfarrand says:

    I concur.

  7. Dukeshire says:

    Thanks for the update on todays practice, Frank. Well done

  8. Dukeshire says:

    NateP, That would require Frank to care about his contributions to this blog.

  9. I think a different one of us fans should be given Frank’s practices pass each week and then we could just post all the practice info each week. I’d do it for free so there wouldn’t be any added cost for the trib.

    That way we would have somebody passionate about updates and Seahawks news (like Sando). I’d definitely take a week off of work to be that guy for one of the 16 games.

    Dukeshire, you can go first. I’ll go second. Nighthawk can go third (they may want to warn Ruskell about showing up for practice if nighthawk is there), and bla, bla, bla…

    It would also be fun to see what other fans reported. Some fans would ask the hard questions and piss some people off. Some fans would be like a deer in headlights and not want to say anything that would upset one of their idols. Either way, the week-to-week reporting would be interesting.

  10. Dukeshire says:

    That would be awesome, BobbyK. The thing that bothers me most about Frank’s latest disappearing act, is that his effort and attention here seems linked directly to the success of the team. That’s B.S.. I had to go to the P.I. yesterday to get a practice update. I usually read Clare to add to what I read here, not anymore. No excuse for it.

  11. Dukeshire says:

    In the grand scheme, it’s not the end of the world or anything. But it’s frustrating.

    In any case, what is the deal with Branch’s heal? I’ve read that it’s a matter of pain tolerance, I’ve also read that he’s had swelling in the knee. Does anyone have any info?

  12. I think I just went cross-eyed reading this.

  13. nighthawk2 says:

    I have no problem with Frank or the way the blog is run. Liked his interview on KJR too. And I agree with his statement there that it would have been better to not have named a successor until the end of this season.

    But yeah, if Ruskell shows up and I’m there, well, wear a cup and a helmet Timmay!.

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