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Old 12-01-2006, 08:28 AM   #1
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Default Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

Consider the source, at the same time I wouldn't be surprised if there is some truth. As another poster (Ambridge I believe?) on this site stated, I wouldn't be shocked if certain stories come out once Cowher is gone and living comfortably in his NC mansion.

ROONEYS FED UP WITH COWHER?

In the world of pro football, where successful deception from devices such as the play-action pass and the zone blitz can lead to good outcomes on the field, things often aren't what they appear to be off the field, either. Though we're not big on conspiracy theories, we've seen on too many occasions the simple reality that an inch or two beneath the surface of an article or a column lies agendas and motivations and off-the-record conversations conducted on triple-secret background.

That's why Gene Collier's item from Tuesday's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette caught our eye. The headline declared, "Count Cowher Among Those Who Should Go." Strong stuff, especially since the Pittsburgh media, in our assessment, is typically supportive of the team they cover.

It's not an uncommon phenomenon in league circles. The Steelers are almost universally beloved in Western Pennsylvania. The locals buy the papers and watch the television stations and listen to the radio channels. They generally want pep rallies from the press, so they usually get pep rallies from the press. (Except when they don't want pep rallies from the press, and Bob Smizik is a master, in our view, of gauging the pulse of the Steelers faithful in this regard.)

So our initial reaction (as mentioned in a One-Liner on Tuesday night) was to suspect that someone higher up in the organization than Cowher has decided that it's time to give the long-time head coach a push toward his long-rumored "retirement" from the team.

The story traces to the early offseason, when Cowher and his wife bought a $2.5 million house in Raleigh, North Carolina. Later, eyebrows raised when Cowher refused to make a commitment beyond the 2006 season, and momentum grew when former Steelers running back Jerome Bettis opined based on his conversations with Cowher that the Chin was ready pack it in.

Collier's column speaks of the looming departure as if it's a done deal, and we can't recall any prior item in which a member of the Pittsburgh media spoke in such frank terms about the situation. In explaining the inability of Cowher to find a way to get his team adequately geeked for a big game against the Ravens in Baltimore, Collier writes: "Maybe that's because, along with his other bags, his psychological bag is packed for North Carolina. Normally Cowher is an intense stew of emotions, at least on game day, but this season, a passersby who had once just hoped to avoid the spittle is now more likely to hear the unsung James Taylor lyrics:

In my mind, I'm goin' to Carolina.
Can't ya just feel the sunshine
Can't you just feel the moonshine
Maybe just like a friend of mine
It hit me from behind
Yes I'm goin' to Carolina in my mind."

A reader has since alerted us to the fact that Collier is a co-writer of "The Chief," a popular one-man play about Steelers founder Art Rooney, which debuted in 2003. (The show made its final run in January 2006.) In our opinion, the warm feelings that Collier's co-creation likely engendered with the Rooney family likely has earned for him most favored nation status -- and it likely has put him in a position to mirror the sentiments coming from the top of the team, especially on important issues like whether they want the head coach to come back in 2007.

Our guess? The Rooneys (though they'd never say so publicly) feel disrespected and, to an extent, betrayed by a coach behind whom they stood loyally, and paid handsomely, even when the team wasn't a contender. Sure, he (finally) delivered a championship, but he has not handled his apparent lame-duck status very well, and if Collier is writing that he thinks Cowher has short-timers disease, our guess is that the Rooneys think so, too.

And we think that they've now had enough of Cowher, and that someone from the family has either said this to Collier -- or he's got a sufficiently clear pipeline to already know it.

www.profootballtalk.com/rumormill.htm
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Old 12-01-2006, 08:41 AM   #2
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

I would not be surprised
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Old 12-01-2006, 08:46 AM   #3
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

"They generally want pep rallies from the press, so they usually get pep rallies from the press."

If there are any truth's to this story, the above statement is one of them.
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Old 12-01-2006, 09:40 AM   #4
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

I concur the Rooneys probably are not happy they went to bat for Cowher in 1999 and 2003, after which he finally does not crash in the playoffs and proceeds to play Hamlet oin whether he wants to be the coach. Combine that with Cowher wanting top $ (which is his right to ask for) and the Rooneys may have divorced Cowher before he divorced them.
Dan Rooney's uncharacteristic blast on the refs after the Atlanta game leads me to believe this is not a happy front office team these days.

On the related points in the post on how the Steelers are covered, the Pittsburgh writers publish what sells, as does any media outlet that needs to pay bills.

In New York rip jobs sell, so that is how it is written. OTOH, in Atlanta the media is expected to be more supportive (hell, the Governor of Georgia went off on the Atlanta Journal Constitution this fall because a headline after Georgia lost to Tennessee was regarded as disrespectful to the Dawgs) so the Braves, Falcons, and (especially) UGA usually get a free ride.

As the initial post states, the Pittsburgh media appears to be supportive when the Steelers are doing well and in attack mode on the rare occasions the Steelers have had a rotten year. I believe it reflects pretty good coverage - if you read Ed.B. of the P-G, especially his online stuff, he is not constantly waving pom-poms for the Black & Gold.
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Old 12-01-2006, 09:46 AM   #5
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Atlanta Dan View Post
if you read Ed.B. of the P-G, especially his online stuff, he is not constantly waving pom-poms for the Black & Gold.
I admit, Ed is one of the very few and I'll throw in Cook. With Ed, it led him to Cowher's doghouse a few years back (big surprise there). He's calmed down.

The homerism goes beyond the papers. Bob Pompeani (tv), Tunch Ilkin (tv/radio), Wolf (tv/radio), Labriola (papers/tv) are all cheerleaders no matter the situation. Tunch tends to focus on what the opposing teams are doing right instead of focusing/criticizing on what we are doing wrong. Pompeani brings up last seasons XL win any time Cowher's decisions/situation is brought up in a negative light. Labriola is "Chief Homer" who I don't bother even reading anymore because I'm affraid he will start handing out laced kool-aid to all his readers/viewers.
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Old 12-01-2006, 10:15 AM   #6
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

I do not have access to Pittsburgh TV but it sounds like Atlanta TV sports news.

With such outlets as ESPN and NFL Network local sports TV is a backwater that needs to make nice with the local teams so they can get their cliched video sound bites.
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Old 12-01-2006, 11:45 AM   #7
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

I'm surprised....yet, I'm not surprised. Cowher is so gone it is not even funny.
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Old 12-01-2006, 11:59 AM   #8
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

Although far removed from Steel-town I read PPG online everyday and am quite familiar with the likes of Stavran, Cook, Smizik, Collier and even Madden. Madden is an animal who by all accoiunts would fit nicely on a NY city team beat. The others I see give good solid coverage to the team. Smizik and Collier give stern criticism where it is warranted.
My question is this, how many of us saw this coming at the beginning of the season ??
I didnt. Not at all. Anybody out there who did ??
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Old 12-01-2006, 12:08 PM   #9
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDuke6 View Post
Although far removed from Steel-town I read PPG online everyday and am quite familiar with the likes of Stavran, Cook, Smizik, Collier and even Madden. Madden is an animal who by all accoiunts would fit nicely on a NY city team beat. The others I see give good solid coverage to the team. Smizik and Collier give stern criticism where it is warranted.
My question is this, how many of us saw this coming at the beginning of the season ??
I didnt. Not at all. Anybody out there who did ??
While Madden and Savern have nothing to do with the PPG, Cook I will give credit (as I did in my previous post). Even though I don't listen to Madden, articles I've read by the guy have convinced me that he is a Steeler hater. When we are at the top of our game he will find a negative. He's a Penguin man and a straight up bum in my opinion.

Smizik will at times put out a legitimate article pertaining to the Steelers (such as this one http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06331/741504-194.stm) but overall he tends to sport the B&G goggles in my opinion (Penguins, Steelers, Pirates in particular).

Savern is one of the few (Steigerwald (both), Cook, Bouchette, Prisuta) who is not affraid to tell it like it is no matter a teams "status" in this city. I'm not asking for 24/7 negativity nor am I asking for 24/7 positivity. A happy medium would be nice.
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Old 12-01-2006, 12:12 PM   #10
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Default Re: Rooney's Fed up with Cowher?

Sorry guys, but I think this is nothing but a load of speculative hooey. Look at Cowher's record, and all of his accomplishments since the Rooneys hired the man back in 1992 - it speaks for itself. Not too many organizations out there who can boast of such success in a 15 year span.

Ed Bouchette did a clip last night on KDKA's 6:00 news (Steigerwald's sports beat) and stated that he has been hearing some very positive things around the Steelers offices about Cowher returning. He didn't go into detail about what he heard, but he did say "don't be surprised if there is a contract extension after the season ends." If I can find a link, I will provide the same.
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