Bill Cowher will return to Pittsburgh and make an announcement about his future Monday, at which time he is expected to retire as coach of the Steelers, sources with knowledge of the situation have told the Post-Gazette.
No press conference has been scheduled by the Steelers, but Cowher has told several people he will come back from Raleigh, N.C. and announce his decision Monday.
Good. This thing has dragged out long enough, and the Steelers assistants (who I think the Rooneys would prefer) are starting to interview elsewhere. Cowher started coaching the same year I started taking any interest in the Steelers (mostly BECAUSE of the hype surrounding Cowher’s hiring). It will be sad to see him go, but he gave us many good years. Compared to places like Arizona or Houston, the Steelers have had good success under Cowher: at the beginning of the year, you always felt like the Steelers had a shot at the playoffs. He took several teams to the AFC Championship game, coached two Super Bowl teams, and finally got the illusive “One for the Thumb” after fourteen years of coaching. While Cowher isn’t the best coach in the NFL (that goes to Bill Belichik), he is a lot better than many currently in the league.
My feeling is that he’s gone, and that come next year, we’ll have only the third Steelers head coach in 39 years. My guess is that Cowher wants a break from NFL coaching, and will either do something at the collegiate level, or just relax for a few years. If he wanted to coach at the NFL level, I don’t think he’d be leaving the Steelers – the Rooneys have kept him around through thick and thin, and he knows he won’t get that treatment from most of the league owners (except for maybe Tennessee, but they have a coach who they are currently keeping). So thanks for all the memories, Cowher. This is one Steeler fan who will miss the jaw, and the lack of Cowher Power around the ‘Burgh.
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