I guess the guy just doesn't like losing.
I guess the guy just doesn't like losing.
Our friends in the Far East will have vivid recollections, it seems.
As only animators in the Far East could present the story. Enjoy!
Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington is extremely active in the dugout during games. He waves home runners as if he were still the third-base coach.
While St. Louis Cardinals counterpart Tony La Russa is famous for his stone-faced intensity, Washington wears his emotions on his sleeve, his face and, best of all, his feet. The Ron Washington Dance became a big hit on You Tube.
Washington is one just of the sports field generals gaining notoriety for their animated style. Here are some others:
Jim Harbaugh, San Francisco 49ers: San Francisco Chronicle columnist Gwen Knapp notes that decorum is not a concern to this first-year coach. “If Bill Walsh once untucked his shirt, briefly flashed some abdomen, and if he chest-bumped an offensive lineman as he raced across a field after a big victory, YouTube doesn't have the clip. He definitely didn't offer up a handshake that turned the losing coach into a special-teams gunner and drew most of the players from both teams into a skirmish. No one has ever done that.”
Harbaugh won’t apologize for his style. “To see your guys go out and perform that way, yeah, you do get emotional. It fires me up. It fires me up a lot," Harbaugh told reporters. “I'm not going to apologize for that. If that offends you or anyone else, so be it.”
Jim Schwartz, Detroit Lions: He features the same animation level as Harbaugh. So nobody was surprised by his over-the-top reaction to Harbaugh’s less-than-gracious post-game handshake after San Francisco’s 25-19 victory. Wrote Drew Sharp of the Detroit Free Press: “It'll be hard erasing the image of a seething Schwartz being restrained from going after Harbaugh, who stood with a smug smirk on his face. That snapshot painted Schwartz as an unhinged maniac.”
The Lions love that side of their coach, though. “Coach is fiery," offensive lineman Rob Sims told the Free Press. “We love that about him. I think he's a great leader in regards to that, just staying positive and being emotional and all that kind of stuff cause you go with some guys and they kind of just hide. He ain't afraid to put his chin out there, and we're not either.”
Stan Van Gundy, Orlando Magic: It's in the bloodlines. Jeff Van Gundy was even more crazed during his coaching days. SVG was the runaway winner in "Most Annoying Coach" survey of NBA players. And it is easy to see why. His grating voice and sideline theatrics are impossible to ignore.
John Calipari, University of Kentucky basketball: Is Coach Cal more animated than in-state rival Rick Pitino? Hard to say. But he is not afraid to get into the face of blue-chip recruits and correct them during games. He used a really bad word during this exchange and had to apologize for it.
Will Muschamp, University of Florida football: His profane outburst during at 17-6 loss to Auburn added an exclamation mark behind his “Coach Boom” image. While he doesn’t plan to scale back his sideline theatrics – which chest bumps and high-fives with his troops -- he hopes to scale back the naughty words.
“It’s hard when you’ve got a 6-year-old and a 10-year-old at home and you’ve got to go home and explain to them what you said,” he told reporters. “So that’s not good and that’s not how we’re going to run our program. That’s it. Again, as far as the sideline stuff’s concerned, we’re going to be who we are. I’m just apologizing for the language, nothing else.”
Frank Martin, Kansas State basketball: There are plenty of animated college basketball coaches, but it’s hard to outdo an angry Martin. He is a huge guy with massive shoulders filling out his suit. He has one of the best death glares in sports history. When he goes berserk -- which is often -- you just have to get out of the way.
John Tortorella, New York Rangers: He goes nuts a lot, like last season when he got into it with Brian Boyle and punctuated his remarks with a vigorous back slap. Or like the time he got into it with a Capitals fan during the 2009 playoffs, menacing him with a stick. Or one of the times he has clashed with intrepid New York Post scribe Larry Brooks.
Mike Gundy, Oklahoma State football. He is always fired up, but he earned a place in the Sports Tirade Hall of Fame with his epic press conference performance in 2007. No better will do better than this. He got hot, cooled down, got hot . . . just a brilliant effort.
Buzz Williams, Marquette University basketball: First of all, he is a much better dancer than Ron Washington. So that is a definite plus. But how do his players keep from cracking up when he gets a little too happy during games?
Bo Pellini, University of Nebraska football: A questionable officiating call can prompt him to thrash about like a pelican fleeing a house fire. His antics earned him a mild rebuke from school administrators. He offered this apology: “I don't agree with every call that's made, and I probably get too animated. I regret that and apologize for it.”
What’s more fun that a good coaches fight?
Nothing, of course, which is why fans are disappointed that Lions coach Jim Schwartz didn’t throw down against 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh during their post-game ruckus. It sounds like he sure wanted to.
Let us go to the scribes for a summation:
Drew Sharp, Detroit Free-Press: “Harbaugh was excessive. He said his only crime was giving Schwartz ‘too hard’ of a handshake. It wasn't a handshake. It was a crude form of the Heimlich maneuver. A 'fired up' Harbaugh didn't just slap Schwartz in the back. If Harbaugh were a high school bully, his actions would rank close to giving a guy a wedgie in gym class. Schwartz was visibly ticked. You didn't need to be an advanced lip reader to know what he said. He pursued Harbaugh, bumping him in the chest. And then apparently Harbaugh said something that transformed Schwartz into a Tasmanian devil. It was ugly. Coaches should know better.”
Gwen Knapp, San Francisco Chronicle: “With Sunday's win in Detroit, Jim Harbaugh probably proved that the 49ers have found the head coach to return them to greatness. He definitely established that, on his watch, the Chardonnay and Brie image from their first dynasty won't be making a comeback. If Bill Walsh once untucked his shirt, briefly flashed some abdomen, and if he chest-bumped an offensive lineman as he raced across a field after a big victory, YouTube doesn't have the clip. He definitely didn't offer up a handshake that turned the losing coach into a special-teams gunner and drew most of the players from both teams into a skirmish. No one has ever done that.”
Mark Purdy, San Jose Mercury News: “Let's face it. Winning makes emotion cool. And no one expected Harbaugh to win this much in his first season with the 49ers. So give it up for the man's fervor. Harbaugh is emotional on the sidelines. He's emotional at halftime. He's emotional after victories. He's emotional after defeats. He's probably emotional while in line at Starbucks. At the same time, it's fortunate that no one was hurt in Sunday's postgame scuffle. And at some point, the question must be asked: Can the players control their head coach?”
Michael Silver, Yahoo! Sports: “I like Harbaugh. I like Schwartz. I like raw emotion. And yet: Both coaches were off the chain after Sunday’s game, and each man exhibited the self-control of an eighth-grader. Thus, this being a diatribe, I am going to give them some scolding. First, Harbaugh: Dude, you won the game, and you’re excited. Congratulations. Next time, however, you might want to consider building a three-second break into your victory dance so that you can give a quick, legitimate handshake to your disappointed coaching counterpart. Similarly, after shaking hands, it’s probably a good idea to avoid slapping said counterpart in the back, thereby punking him in front of his assistants, his players, tens of thousands of fans and a national TV audience. Also, try offering what appears to be a sincere apology after the fact, however insincere it might be. Insincerity – that’s what coaches do. OK, now onto Schwartz: While Harbaugh’s aggressive handshake, shove to the back and possible obscenity may have riled you, and I can understand why you’d approach him a second time to express your displeasure, maybe go easy on the whole Ron Artest (aka Metta World Peace) impersonation. As the Chiefs’ Todd Haley can tell you, in the court of public opinion you’re in a no-win situation – given that your team lost. Also, all those speeches to your players about composure lose a little bit of oomph when the man delivering the message goes berserk with the whole world watching.”
Mike O’Hara, Detroit News: “If you're judging the fallout from Sunday's postgame coaches' confrontation between the Lions' Jim Schwartz and the 49ers Jim Harbaugh, put yourself in the position of the people who have the most to gain or lose. The NFL's schedule-maker and the network television executives should have only one regret: They have to wait until next year for the rematch. It's a pity the Lions and 49ers aren't in the same division and have another game scheduled for this season. The buildup for Harbaugh-Schwartz II would be unlike anything we've seen in Detroit in recent years — including last week's Lions-Bears game on Monday Night Football.”