In January, syndicated columnist and Washington Post writer Norman Chad wrote a column in which he told his readers why he does not like Pete Carroll. In fact Chad, a fan of all other things Seattle, didn’t have anything nice to say about the Seahawks either. Normally I will place a link for my readers to view said article or at least write the title.
I’m not doing either this time.
Not because Chad was a “meanie” about my favorite team and coach. I’m just tired of hatred replacing creativity in sports.
Norman Chad is funny, insightful and popular. He usually makes sense when explaining why he feels a certain way. This time he just seemed bitter. His reason for rooting against the Seahawks is weak at best. They apparently show too much love for the game and their fans. The 12th Man annoys him for their love of the team.
And Carroll? His dislike for Carroll was based on a choking gesture made after a missed field goal by the opposing team. As an assistant coach 20 YEARS AGO! Like most assistants he got caught up in the moment celebrating with his players. It wasn’t a throat slash, just a quick moment with his hands around his neck. Again for Chad, too much love being shown, this time about his team’s fortune. Hey look, we uncovered a trend! Anyone who follows Chad has certainly learned about his many divorces. I think we have uncovered why he hasn’t been very successful in marriage. C’mon Shirley, pay me.
What Norman and others who like to beat Carroll down fail to see, the most impressive thing about his coaching success is how he has embraced a past filled with mediocrity to become a very successful head coach. As one of just three coaches to win both a NCAA D-1 title and NFL championship (to be fair Chad wrote his piece prior to the playoff game against New Orleans), Carroll has finally set himself apart.
He deserves the three year extension Paul Allen gave him last week. He deserves to be paid as a top-tier coach in the NFL. More than anything, he deserves to be respected for reviewing past failures and making changes. You don’t have to like the way he runs along the sideline or jumps into his players arms after a score. He’s not going to apologize for living a life he is passionate about. But Norman, have a little respect for a man who has endured very difficult times. Respect the fact he didn’t give up.
The coach of the Seahawks is not the same coach of the ’90’s. In fact I think his energy has increased each year since ’95. There are many owners in the NFL who would love to find a Pete Carroll to lead them. Fortunately for the Seahawk players and the 12th Man, we have the original Carroll and he fits in nicely.