Tag:Jimmy Johnson
Posted on: January 26, 2012 2:25 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2012 4:31 pm

Is Schiano a beneficiary of the Harbaugh Effect?

There aren't many college coaches who have successfully transitioned to the NFL. (AP/Getty Images)

By Ryan Wilson

The NFL coaching scrap heap is littered with accomplished college coaches who couldn't make the transition to the professional game. But it only takes one success story to shift the perception from "those guys can't cut it" to "where can we find another one?"

Bucs hire Schiano

Jim Harbaugh arrived in San Francisco last offseason after leading Stanford to 12 wins, including an Orange Bowl victory over Virginia Tech. Twelve months later, the 49ers were a few plays away from going to the Super Bowl after a 13-3 regular season and an NFC West title.

And unlike Stanford, Harbaugh didn't have an Andrew Luck-type franchise quarterback under center in San Francisco. Yes, Alex Smith was a former first-overall pick, but his career up till Harbaugh's arrival could kindly be described as pedestrian. Now the 49ers want him back in 2012 and there may be some competition for his services should he make it to free agency.

“I feel so much different than in years past, just the sideline -- the sideline atmosphere is so much different," Smith said before Sunday's NFC Championship game. "When bad things happen, when plays get made against us, things like that, the guys are just so confident.”

It's that type of confidence that may have led the Glazer family, owners of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, to bypass the typical NFL coaching search, one that has recently included interviewing former NFL big names, up-and-coming coordinators and a few dark horse assistants. And instead, refocus their efforts at the college level, in the hopes of unearthing the next Jim Harbaugh.

This explains Oregon coach Chip Kelly's brief dalliance with the Bucs. And it may explain why they ultimately settled on Rutgers' Greg Schiano after Kelly got cold feet. (The elephant in the room, of course, is that Schiano, unlike Harbaugh and Kelly, hasn't had quite their level of success in recent seasons.)

                                           (Getty Images)
Schiano leaves Rutgers with a 67-67 record, but it took him five years to build the program from one of the worst in the country to annually competitive in the Big East. He was 49-28 in his last six seasons, and if it's one thing the Bucs need, it's someone who knows how to build a winner. The big question: will the front office and fans will have the patience to wait around.

If Schiano's looking for inspiration from his college brethren who made it work in the NFL … well, the pickings are slim. In addition to Harbaugh, three coaches stand out:

Jimmy Johnson

Johnson was the first coach Jerry Jones hired after he bought the Cowboys and promptly ushered Tom Landry out the door. Tough circumstances to walk into after leading the Miami Hurricanes in the '80s, but he went on to win back-to-back Super Bowls before leaving Dallas for the Dolphins, and ultimately a gig as an NFL analyst for Fox Sports.

Barry Switzer

He was Oklahoma's head coach from 1973-1988 and amassed a 157-29-4 record, including three national championships. He resigned before the 1989 season and after the NCAA had placed the Sooners on probation. Five years later, Jones pegged Switzer to replace Jimmy Johnson in Dallas. He went 12-4 in his first two seasons, with the Cowboys winning the Super Bowl following the 1995 season. He resigned three years later and left the NFL with a 45-26 career mark.

Tom Coughlin

Coughlin got his start at Rochester Institute of Technology, where he served as the head coach from 1970-73, and after seven seasons as an assistant with Syracuse, and two more with Boston College, Coughlin served as an assistant coach for three NFL teams from 1984-1990. He then returned to college, accepting the head-coaching gig at BC. In three years, he led the Eagles to a 41-39 record, including a 1993 win over top-ranked Notre Dame.

Coughlin was hired by the expansion Jaguars in 1995 and he's been an NFL head coach ever since. In February 2008, he led the Giants to a Super Bowl XLII victory over the then-undefeated Patriots. He'll go for Lombardi Trophy No. 2 when New York again faces New England on February 5.

So what does this mean for Schiano? History hasn't been kind to college coaches making the jump to the NFL, but there are exceptions. It's not much, but it's all the Glazer have right now.

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Posted on: February 3, 2011 1:32 pm

Jimmy Johnson talks Super Bowl, Dallas SB scene

Posted by Will Brinson

DALLAS -- Jimmy Johnson doesn't live in Dallas -- he's too busy diving in the Keys, natch -- but he knows a little bit about this city, having won a game or two for the Cowboys back in his day.

I sat down with Jimmy on radio row to talk about the Steelers-Packers matchup, and get his thoughts on the impending lockout, Dallas weather and scene and the best way to get home from Dallas parties (hint: have friends at Crown Royal). 

[More Super Bowl coverage]

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Posted on: November 12, 2010 9:35 am

Jimmy Johnson: Jerry Jones 'will never change'

Posted by Will Brinson

The lack of success from the Dallas Cowboys has been, for the most part, pinned on Wade Phillips. After all, they (we think) have a ton of talent and yet they (we know) have very few wins.

But it's completely understandable to put some of the onus for failure on Jerry Jones, as he's the Owner/President/GM. And that's just what former Dallas Cowboys coach (and recent Survivor contestant!) Jimmy Johnson did recently.

"Jerry will never change," Johnson told Sam Farmar of the Los Angeles Times. "Jerry wants to be right in the middle of it. That's why he paid all that money to buy them."

Johnson also added that Stephen Jones, Jerry's son and the Cowboys' COO is "such a huge part of the process too."

"So that's family," Johnson said. "And when it comes to family, there's no stronger bond. Jerry's not going to change because his family's so involved."

There are plenty of folks out there who believe that the Cowboys won't win, regardless of who's coaching the team, until Jerry cedes some of his control over personnel to someone with a better knowledge of how to assemble a team.

And that makes sense given the unwillingness of Jones to can Wade Phillips sooner, despite Wade's obvious inability to control his troops (sloppy play and mental errors have been a trademark of Phillips' regime). But before everyone starts petitioning for Jones' resignation (which ain't coming), it's worth at least giving the Cowboys' talent a shot at how it'll do under a coach who understands discipline, like John Fox, Bill Cowher.

And yeah, Jason Garrett nearly made that list, as he could definitely end up coaching the Cowboys in 2011 -- but he was running the O in Big D when, as Johnson (and everyone else on the planet who watched the Cowboys play the last three weeks) put it, "they quit."

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Posted on: September 29, 2010 10:10 pm
Edited on: September 29, 2010 10:27 pm

Jimmy Johnson voted off 'Survivor'

Posted by Andy Benoit

NFL Super Bowl winning head coach Jimmy Johnson was voted off Survivor Nicaragua Thursday night. The 67-year-old was the third person voted off.

Johnson showed admirable humility and honesty in assessing his value to the Espada tribe. At Tribal Council, he declared himself to be the weakest castaway. His fellow mature tribemates unanimously chose to boot him.

"I had fun, but I was miserable the whole time," Johnson said, according to Derrick Lang of the Kansas City Star. "I still love the game, and it's been a great adventure. This is the most stressful time I've ever gone through in my life, and I'm including Super Bowls and collegiate national championships. I initially said, 'Keep your strongest members.' I obviously wasn't one of the strongest members."

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Category: NFL
Posted on: September 11, 2010 11:33 pm

Jimmy Johnson and Survivor

Posted by Andy Benoit

Former Cowboys and Dolphins head coach and current Fox NFL analyst Jimmy Johnson will make his debut on CBS’s hit reality show Survivor Nicaragua this Wednesday. Johnson, a longtime fan of Survivor, tried unsuccessfully six years ago to get on the show. “I did my little video and everything and went through the regular application,” he said. (Likelihood that a two-time Super Bowl winner actually went through the “regular application”: somewhere between 0 and 0.5 percent.) J. Johnson (US Presswire)

Johnson tried to get on the show again three years ago and, well, here’s how he tells the story:

“(I) went all the way through and got pretty well approved up until the medical and I was a - I always worked out and jogged – (but) I was heavy. The Survivor doctors called me and said, ‘Coach, we’d love to take you but you’ve got one artery 100% blocked and another one 70% blocked. You need to see your cardiologist.’ I went to see the cardiologist and a week later I had a stent put in, went on a strict diet, lost 30 pounds, my cholesterol went from 220 to under a hundred and so I got healthy and in fact Survivor may have actually, you know, made me a survivor.”

Johnson, 67, got in good enough shape to succeed on his third try this year. In a conference call with reporters, Johnson, careful not to give away any results of the show, talked about his strategy. He wanted to avoid lying to other players, and he wanted to avoid a leadership role (apparently the early leaders tend to get voted off quicker). But, obviously, his background as a two-time Super Bowl champion made it difficult to abstain from all leadership positions.

In the conference call, more than a few clever reporters asked Johnson to make the connection between the show and football. Asked who else from the NFL he’d like to see on Survivor, Johnson said, “Most professional football players and people that really I’m associated with, they’re too accustomed to the easy life.”

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Category: NFL
Posted on: August 11, 2010 3:17 pm
Edited on: August 11, 2010 3:59 pm

NFC East Preview Podcast (Feat. Jimmy Johnson)

Jimmy Johnson's done a little bit of winning on the football field in his day. Most people remember him for turning the Dallas Cowboys into a near-dynasty with the trio of Emmitt Smith, Troy Aikman and Michael Irvin.

People also are all hot to trot these days about the news that Johnson will be a contestant on Survivor this season (starts September 15, on CBS, in case you haven't heard).

We were lucky enough to catch up with JJ -- fresh off a red-eye flight back to the states -- to talk "Survivor" with him as well as preview the NFC East. Since, obviously, Jimmy knows a thing or two about the teams in that division.

So, go ahead. Click the play button. Got a question you want answered on the show? Hit us up on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL) or email will.brinson [at] cbs [dot] com

We'll be running out a few of these a week, so there's plenty of time. Oh, and also, be a friend and subscribe either by RSS or iTunes below.

If you can't view the podcast, click here to download .
Or, make it easy on yourself and  Subscribe via iTunes .

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Posted on: July 21, 2010 9:52 am
Edited on: July 21, 2010 11:01 am

Jimmy Johnson joining 'Survivor: Nicaragua' cast?

Jimmy Johnson, former Cowboys coach and current Fox broadcaster, will inexplicably (and, reportedly) spiff up his already impressive acting resume on "Survivor: Nicaragua," the latest rendition of CBS' popular television show.

My man Calvin Watkins has a source claiming that Johnson is prepared to go where no really wealthy, multiple-championship-winning, still-gainfully-employed broadcaster has gone before: reality television.

Now, sure, there have been lots of folk who have appeared on stuff like "Dancing With the Stars," like Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin, Chad Ochocinco, and Lawrence Taylor. But that's more of a "hey, look how my talents on the football field translate over into stuff that kind of seems like real life!" attention grab.

Or something. This, though, is different. It's "Survivor," where the whole purpose (at least I've always thought) is to throw a ton of strangers onto an island and see how long they can last while playing a low-stakes game of international intrigue vis-a-vis learning each other's weaknesses and then exploiting them for personal gain.

Johnson on board kind of defeats the purpose, since someone just needs to sneak in his tent and hijack whatever product JJ brings to put in his hair. He won't last more than two episodes.

-- Will Brinson

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com