Blogger templates

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Jim Harbaugh’s lie could tarnish his reputation with his players

I’ve heard coaches stretch the truth, avoid questions they don’t want to answer and even “interpret” a question differently in order to give the response they want but it always bothers me when a coach just flat out lies to the media.

San Francisco 49ers’ head coach Jim Harbaugh addressed what he called an “erroneous perception that we were flirting with Peyton Manning,” in a meeting with reporters on Wednesday. How sad is that?

Harbaugh went on to say that, “Alex Smith has always been our quarterback,” and stated that they “had every intention of always bringing him back.”

Let’s be real here. Harbaugh flew all the way out to North Carolina to watch Manning work out then waited until Manning eliminated the 49ers from his list before they re-signed Smith.

The 49ers didn’t even offer Smith a contract until Manning informed them they were out of consideration. Now he wants us to believe they never seriously considered signing Manning?

Hogwash (which is about the safest thing I can say without losing the kid-friendly status of my blog)! If Manning would have chosen San Francisco then there is no way Smith would be wearing a 49ers jersey right now.

But will his fictitious comments affect his relationship with his players? I doubt it but it should.

If I played for a coach I would want to feel that they are being straight with me and not just saying stuff to stroke my ego.

And that is all this is about. Harbaugh is putting on a front to boost Smith’s confidence going into the season. While I don’t blame him for that, he could have made a statement that is more believable than the flat out lie that he always planned on Smith being the team’s quarterback this season.

But Smith played the part of the loyal soldier backing up Harbaugh’s words. He says they were in negotiations for a contract before the Manning sweepstakes and that Harbaugh kept him abreast of everything that was going on during their flirtation with Manning. 

So if there wasn’t a problem then why would he need to go work out for the Miami Dolphins? Smith also had plans to visit Seattle before they signed Matt Flynn. I guess Smith was also doing his “due diligence.”

Either way it goes this will be an interesting season for the 49ers. Although Manning is no longer in the picture, Smith should still be concerned about the 49ers’ 2011 2nd-round pick Colin Kaepernick who is bigger and has a much stronger arm than Smith.

The 49ers brought in some speedier wide receivers this offseason to help stretch the field and will be looking to get them the ball deep. If Smith can’t deliver then Harbaugh may turn to Kaepernick at some point during the season.

But for now Smith is the man. We know because Harbaugh went out of his way to say so which means there has to be some truth to it right? Well at least that is the story Harbaugh is telling and he’s sticking to it.

Do you have a favorite team or player you want to know more about?
Email your questions to and I’ll devote a post to it. Send your name (or an alias) with the question and get a shoutout on the site.
Want to offer a rebuttal of one of my posts or simply feel you can do better?
Then email your article along with your name (or an alias) and I will post it. 
Roosevelt Hall is an NFL Blogger for The Sport Mentalist and an NBA Blogger for The Sport Mentalist 2. He is also a Sports Reporter for Pro Sports Lives. He can be contacted at and be sure to follow him on Twitter @sportmentalist.

Also check out these stories:


  1. Yeah... great article except it is based on a huge lie. Alex Smith had a contract on the table not only before they kicked the tires on Manning, but also during the time they talked to manning, and it was still there afterward as well.

    Now I know why you call it the "mentalist".

  2. Smith had a contract offer well before they talked to manning.

    Seems your accusations of lies come from glass houses.

  3. I think you two are confused. I didnt say he didnt have an offer on the table but if you look up some of the stories during that time you would see that Smith wasnt satisfied with what was being offered. He nearly led them to the Super Bowl last season and they low-balled him but if Peyton would have chosen San Fran the 49ers would have opened the bank for him and rescinded Smith's offer. Smith's signing was a combination of Smith not finding interest elsewhere and the fact that the 49ers had few options themselves.