Sports Outside the Beltway

Why Would Cowher Leave? WHY???

OK, a bit of hyperbole there. However, in this piece, James wondered why Cowher would leave that nice job in Pittsburgh. There would be two reasons:

1. To coach or become the athletic director at his alma mater, NC State. The coaching position is no longer available, so that would seem to point away from this. However, I have heard rumors that Cowher had wanted that job, but that the Rooneys told him no. If that’s the case, then there might be some bad blood generated there. Also, NC State alums are furious at the current AD, Lee Fowler, for botching the basketball coaching search as badly as he did (although, there seem to be signs that this may actually work out). They wouldn’t mind seeing a change.

2. To retire, at least for a while. I could see that. He doesn’t seem as passionate this year as he has in the past.

I am of the opinion that Cowher is as good as gone. His conduct has not that of someone who is thinking about staying. He talks with the Charlotte, NC area media about how he’s going to have to have a meeting for the future, but doesn’t let the Pittsburgh media ask. He is coy about his contract. As I mentioned above, he seems to lack the fire that used to animate him on the sidelines. I do have to wonder what happened with that NC State job – Cowher was in the running in the rumor mill, but he never officially got on the bandwagon. When asked about it when the job was open, he didn’t say “I never considered that job”, which would have at least signaled that the reason he wasn’t interviewing was a lack of interest on HIS part. He said something to the effect of “I am not a candidate for that position.” This indicated to me that he wanted it, and that either NC State hadn’t offered the job, or the Steelers were preventing him from getting an offer. I am currently inclined to think the latter, although we will surely see in time.

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