Pete Carroll: Jim Harbaugh’s deal is that he’s a “fantastic football coach”


The 49ers season has not played out the way they hoped and Jim Harbaugh’s run as the team’s head coach appears to be heading for an inglorious end, which leaves any of Harbaugh’s detractors a lot of space to gloat.

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll and Harbaugh have had their battles dating back to college, including the memorable “What’s your deal?” exchange at midfield after Stanford routed USC in 2009, but Carroll isn’t going the negative route ahead of what looks like the final meeting of this stage of their rivalry. Carroll didn’t comment on the chatter about Harbaugh’s impending departure from the Niners, instead talking about the “tremendous respect” he has for a coach that he loves to play against.

“I’ve never seen him not be a really good coach. He’s a fantastic football coach. I’ve watched him do all the stuff he did at Stanford and turned that program around. What he’s done at the Niners, I know that he’s a great football coach,” Carroll said, via “Not everybody likes everybody or gets along with everybody but sometimes you don’t see the magic that guys have. I think he’s a fantastic football coach; he’s proven that. There’s no question about that.”

A win by Carroll on Sunday would even the lifetime series between the men at 6-6 while continuing to push the Seahawks and 49ers in very different directions in 2014. If the 49ers can’t find another “fantastic football coach,” that would probably work just fine for Carroll and company too.

37 responses to “Pete Carroll: Jim Harbaugh’s deal is that he’s a “fantastic football coach”

  1. Pete Carroll was always a class guy, always found it a shame he gets blamed for USC’s sanctions fiasco by the uninformed masses when the blame solely rests on Reggie Bush who oddly gets no criticism. And I’m a UCLA fan who hated Carroll when he was laying waste to the Bruins mind you.

  2. There are people I work with who I have no respect for as human beings but as co workers they do a fantastic job and I respect them for that. I give Pete props for not letting personal feelings get in the way of showing respect for Jim and acknowledging what Jim is, and that is a fantastic football coach.

  3. The 49er’s firing Harbaugh would be the worst coaching move since Jerry fired Jimmy. I’ve heard even Bill Walsh was hard to get along with. If your GM can’t get along with the best coach the 9er’s have had since Bill Waslh, perhaps he is the one who should go.

  4. Total BS! Pete Carroll is a joke! I could win the division with that defense! If they had a NFL quality QB, they would be a threat! Your time is running out Petey!

  5. Pete Carroll has also been cheating since his days back at USC. But if you ain’t cheating you ain’t trying Patriots vs Seahawks for Super Bowl would be great. Endless stories to talk about

  6. Harbaugh recruited Carroll’s son Nate when JH was coaching at USD. Carroll likes Harbaugh. Always has. Except maybe that one day when Toby Gerhardt ran over Pete’s defense in the LA Coliseum

  7. Seriously?! The Niners are seriously gonna get rid of Harbaugh? If you can’t get over that a guy is annoying because he might have a .500 season after 3 straight NFC championships, fold the franchise.

  8. I a Seahawk fan and I can’t stand Harbaugh. But if the Niners get rid of him, it would be the biggest mistake the franchise ever made. He’s a hell of a coach!

  9. Seahawks fans will miss him too. In the Seahawks narrative of the last few years, he played the role of master villain perfectly. Who are Hawks fans gonna hate on now? Arians? He looks like that kid from “A Christmas Story.”

  10. You can try to belittle the 49ers by calling them Santa Clara, but remember San Francisco is not a city, it is a nation. Though we all want Harbaugh to stay, we will still be here regardless of the coach and regardless of the record. Just like we always have. Fan bases established in 2012 can not say the same.

  11. I think in this case Carroll’s saying this because he knows he has Harbaugh’s number and would like to see him coach Santa Clara as long as possible. 3 of Harbaugh’s 4 wins against the Seahawks were with Alex Smith, and 2 of those 3 Alex Smith wins were against Tarvaris Jackson at QB.

  12. I tried to see the backhandedness in Carroll’s comments and I could find none. Conclusion: Carroll is being genuine and sincere.

    Thanks for the comment’s Pete. Still don’t like you though.

    – A UCLA Bruin (and a 49er fan)

  13. I would be shocked if SF let’s Harbaugh go. He’s turned the team around, the problem now is that Kap is not a good QB. Has nothing to do with Harbaugh as a coach.

  14. Memories get short after a few years of winning, but the 49ers were in the toilet for quite a while before hiring Harbaugh. I think a better option would be to seek a new GM compatible with him than send him to coach against them. Although Alex Smith might not have been the long term solution at QB, I think the way he was replaced was Harbaugh’s biggest mistake—and he lost the trust of the locker room. He is still the best coach available if he can get the front office behind him. Pete’s team better not sleep on this game—lot of pride on the line.

  15. “Fan bases established in 2012” You mean like the Niners fanbase? I’ve never seen so many Niner flags flying like they have been in the last couple of years. How many of those flags will be swapped with Raider flags in the next couple of years. How many house fires will be started with burning Kaepernick jerseys?

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