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Nolan named new coach of the 49ers

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Nolan named new coach of the 49ers

Postby MadScott » Mon Jan 17, 2005 6:42 pm

Story, http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news;_ylc=X ... &type=lgns

Niners pick Nolan to be new coach

By GREG BEACHAM, AP Sports Writer
January 17, 2005
SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) -- Baltimore defensive coordinator Mike Nolan accepted the San Francisco 49ers' head coaching position Monday and began to negotiate a contract to take over the team that had the NFL's worst record last season.

Nolan, a longtime coordinator for four teams who has never been a head coach, will replace Dennis Erickson, fired earlier in the month after going 9-23 in two seasons out of the playoffs. San Francisco went 2-14 this season.

After wowing 49ers owner John York in an interview Thursday, Nolan accepted the offer Monday and flew to York's home in Ohio to work out a contract.

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``(York) had a good strong list of candidates, and they felt that Mike was the perfect candidate to lead us into the future,'' 49ers spokesman Kirk Reynolds said.

Nolan earned the chance to follow in the footsteps of his father, Dick, who went 54-53-5 in eight seasons as the 49ers' coach from 1968-75, winning three straight division championships and reaching two NFC title games while getting the first playoff wins in franchise history.

Mike Nolan, 45, has been in charge of the Ravens' powerful defense since 2001, following stints as the coordinator with the New York Jets (2000), Washington (1997-99) and the New York Giants (1993-96). Baltimore ranked sixth in the NFL in total defense last season.

General manager Terry Donahue was fired along with Erickson, and Nolan will have a hand in picking Donahue's successor as York rebuilds the once-proud franchise, which will have the top pick in the next draft.

York, who didn't return a call seeking comment, has said he planned to hire a coach with broad powers, supplemented by a general manager who concentrates on salary cap issues.

Nolan will be the 15th head coach in 49ers history.

Nolan was interviewed by York and two of the few remaining members of the 49ers' front office. He was offered the job Monday morning, beating out four other candidates: New England defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel, thought to be Cleveland's top choice; Giants defensive coordinator Tim Lewis; and Tennessee coordinators Mike Heimerdinger and Jim Schwartz.

Southern California coach Pete Carroll, thought to be York's top choice after he fired Erickson, apparently was never contacted by the 49ers after initially saying he wasn't interested.

Nolan is a protege of Dan Reeves, who hired the former Oregon safety for his first NFL job with the Denver Broncos in 1987. He was a hot candidate for several head coaching spots in recent years, but his star had cooled slightly until the 49ers became interested.


Updated on Monday, Jan 17, 2005 1:21 pm EST

I'm surprised Mercer didn't pick this out sooner. I think this could be an interesting hire. I at least like that it's not one of the retreads that were being tossed about.
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Re: Nolan named new coach of the 49ers

Postby Mercer Boy » Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:06 pm

MadScott wrote:I'm surprised Mercer didn't pick this out sooner. I think this could be an interesting hire. I at least like that it's not one of the retreads that were being tossed about.

I didn't have to...WATER BOY did it first. :-)

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Postby water boy » Mon Jan 17, 2005 10:20 pm

i was a little quick sorry,mad scott
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Postby portisfan24 » Mon Jan 17, 2005 10:48 pm

well hes got his work cut out for him
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Postby MadScott » Mon Jan 17, 2005 11:01 pm

My apologies for the thread.

He certainly does but I've actually got a decent feeling about him. I think it'll be a positive step back.
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Postby OwenTheBlonde » Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:20 am

He could definitely help toughen up the D even if personnel doesn't change much and that could improve them 2-4 wins alone.
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Postby proKrastinate » Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:39 pm

OwenTheBlonde wrote:He could definitely help toughen up the D even if personnel doesn't change much and that could improve them 2-4 wins alone.


thats if our first 4 CBs don't get injured, and our LB named Julian, among others things
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Postby PackerAttack84 » Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:57 pm

They can't do much worse then this season, a good hire, from what I hear he shoulda had a job a couple years ago but he could never get interviews because the Ravens were in the playoffs.
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Postby steelyeri » Tue Jan 18, 2005 8:46 pm

I would have thought that they go with someone more established. They need a lot of help. I think they made a mistake by not hiring a gm first and let him find someone more to his liking.
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Postby MadScott » Thu Jan 20, 2005 10:43 pm

steelyeri wrote:I would have thought that they go with someone more established. They need a lot of help. I think they made a mistake by not hiring a gm first and let him find someone more to his liking.
Nothing personal here but I disagree on both accords.

First, I don't like the idea of going with some retread from another team. Jim Fossel's name was being thrown around as well as rumors of Mike Martz (loosely until he won the first playoff game) and Mike Holmgren. Holmgren may have made some sense for the 49ers but more than likely he would have cost draft picks which the 49ers can ill afford to lose.

I also like hiring Nolan before naming a GM. With scant little exception, coaches that have are GMs have not had much success in the NFL, especially recently. It's too dynamic of a game right now for one person to focus on two jobs. That being said, probably now more than ever, it's very important for a coach to have alot of control and input into player personnel decisions. Who knows better the type of player that best works in a coach's system than the coach himself?

Bill Walsh, for instance, didn't always win with the most talent on the field, simply put, his players were the most talented executors of his game plan. Bottom line is that the 49ers actually seem to have had a recent epipheny and realize this. They are giving Nolan a large part of the say as far as personel goes on the team. The next step is to find someone who has an equal eye for talent and who can get contracts done.
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