Last year, as the 49ers were searching (or, perhaps more accurately, “searching”) for a new head coach after parting ways with (or, perhaps more accurately “parting ways with”) Jim Harbaugh, a rumor emerged that the 49ers possibly would be hiring Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly. (The rumor was quickly debunked, primarily since Jim Tomsula was always going to be the successor to Harbaugh.)
This year, two weeks after hiring Brian’s brother (not really) Chip Kelly to coach the team, owner Jed York addressed whether he considered hiring Brian this time around.
“This is in no way disrespectful to Brian Kelly: I would never hire the coach from Notre Dame, ever,” York told Rich Eisen on Thursday, via the San Jose Mercury News. “That’s my opinion, that I would never do that to my alma mater. That would never happen. I think a lot of Brian Kelly. I think he’s a hell of a coach. But I would never take a coach away from my alma mater.”
But why wouldn’t he? If the goal is to win Super Bowls (indeed, he seems to believe the mandate is to win every one of them), why wouldn’t he consider any coach who is in the coaching profession, regardless of where the coach currently is coaching?
York presumably will be running the 49ers for a long time to come, and the 49ers will be periodically searching for new head coaches. The notion that they’d never hire the head coach of the school that produced the greatest quarterback in franchise history simply because York went to college there seems to be not fully in line with the goal of winning every Super Bowl — assuming the coach at Notre Dame ever is a guy who could satisfy those very high, and inherently unrealistic, expectations.