Killion: “Source says Harbaugh’s act has worn thin in the locker room.”

I just read an interesting column by Ann Killion, and I’m passing it along to you.

An excerpt: “One source with inside knowledge of the team says that Harbaugh’s act has worn thin in the locker room, particularly among some key ‘face of the 49ers’ type players. While the team is winning, that’s not a problem. But a few losses could expose a widening rift.”

To read the column, click here.

  1. Drama get’s old fast, Harbaugh will be here at least another season and if we win a Super Bowl great, pay the man if he wants to stay, if not goodbye Jimmy, drama will follow you everywhere. What have you ever won?

    1. Exactly what i was thinking. The guy is a very good coach. But he hasnt won anything. He even lost his only BCS bowl game at Stanford.

        1. Oops. Brain fart. Your right. My mistake. Still tho.. If he wants to be paid & have control like a SuperBowl winning coach then how about first.. He WINS THE SUPERBOWL! Im not one to agree with Grant alot but he has a point. If Harbaugh cant win with a roster as stacked as this then when will he be able to ? When he has all pros at every position ?

    2. One Orange Bowl win, does not merit to be the highest paid coach in the NFL. He is not the best coach in his division, not even in the top 5 in the NFL, and not even the best coach in his family. He reminds me of a guy, that plans a trip, but with a 1/4 mile to go, he runs out of gas. He loses logic when it most manners, does not handle high pressure games when it counts, if he did, he would of won at least one Super Bowl already.

    3. Such a tough predicament. I reflect on how bad this team was prior to Harbaugh taking over and feel as though he may be worth the drama. However, per Maiocco and other journalists, many feel as though Harbaugh is just too mercurial and high drama to deal with. I think you are onto something, perhaps let this season play out, and if he wins, extend him. If he does not, perhaps try to seamlessy transition to Tomosula or a coach with a similar philosiphy.

  2. Grant, you’re writing double hearsay now? Ann Killion says so, and she has a source, so now Grant chimes in? Do your own research. We’ve already seen the Killion article and we’re also well aware that Killion is the third biggest Harbaugh antagonist in sports media, behind only you and the real Cohn.

    1. This is what media does. They get a idea and they beat it like a dead horse. I started to look at other 49er blogs and this is the only one that talks about the Harbaugh situation. The others are talking draft,free agency,salary cap and recent signings

      1. Well…. that’s just not true. Every single other 49er blog has talked about this situation, which is entirely appropriate. Now, let’s get back to personnel discussions!

    2. Come on E it says; “One source with inside knowledge”
      It must be the Janitor, since he has inside and outside knowledge.
      if that doesn’t suffice, what does?

  3. How lame and yet so predictable. Next, cue up a spate of articles by the National media echoing the “Harbaugh has lost the locker room” meme. Quoting unamed sources of course.

  4. “But a few losses could expose a widening rift.”

    49ers lose in week 2 and 3 and instead of a widening rift, they run off 5 consecutive wins. 49ers lose in week 10 and 11 and instead of a widening rift, they run off 8 consecutive wins.

    So after week 3 and week 11, perfect opportunities for this supposed rift to show its ugly face, the 9ers do the exact opposite.

    This quote is a reach at best from the writer and the fact that Grant jumps all over it is also telling.

    1. I agree. Killian’s single source is a gratuitous point at best. In fact she doesn’t even relate it to the rest of her analysis of the situation. Kawakami is doing a series on the “suit” dilemma that’s probably going to be much more interesting than any analysis in this blog or any done be Killian.

      Remember how glad Montana was to see Walsh leave?

  5. We may have one reason or another to slam Grant. How can this be one of them? He passed along, without any editorial comment or opinion, an actual fact: an associate wrote an article that you may be interested in. Any questions should directed to the author.

  6. Grant you’re weak. You have and will continue to have no merit with San Franciso 49er football. I like to read facts, not TMZ or the Enquirer. Lifes easy when daddy hooks you up.

  7. Grant I’ve always given you the benefit of the doubt when it came to your posts regarding Harbaugh. Others here have howled that it was a personal, While I have disagreed with many of your opinions of JH I have defended your opinions as professional not personally motivated. Now that this site has become the criticize JH 24\7 site I’m beginning to doubt my opinion of your work. I would say your coverage of JH is about as “fair and balanced” as Fox news or MSNBC. Your relentless negative point of view is beginning to remind me of your dads coverage of Joe Montana in the mid 80′s. Lastly if you want to continue writing attack pieces on JH, please do ones that you personally have researched, this is your site investigate and create don’t just offer opinion or repeat others work.

    1. Well put coach! I agree.
      We weren’t even in the playoffs until this guy came around. We’re considered an elite team in the nfl now. I still believe Seattle only won the division because of Crabtree’s absence. 31 teams per year don’t win the SB. How many consistently go as far as we do every year? He’s a winner. Pay the man!

  8. The drumbeats of war because the press corps doesn’t like the way Harbaugh slaps them around at his press conferences….

    1. “The drumbeats of war because the press corps doesn’t like the way Harbaugh slaps them around at his press conferences….”

      Yep….that says it all.

  9. “Source”…BS if you can’t put your name on it then you’re either lying or not man enough to stand behind your words.

    Name the source and lets us decide if it’s a credible statement or not otherwise it’s nothing but BS.

  10. Well , if there one thing learned by those in power or who associate with those in power, when all else failes ,attack the messenger!

    Grant, thanks for the link, and yes , I foung the column to be of interest.

  11. I guess the media doesn’t have faith that they truly beat Trigger to death so they are going at it again and again and…

        1. Meh, its kept me entertained for a bit during the empty stretch between end of the season and the draft :-)

          1. If people stop commenting on it, Grant will post about something else. It was interesting enough to keep people discussing it for a while, so I guess there wasn’t better things to talk about…

      1. Just like two years ago when the locker room was ready to mutiny on John Harbaugh, can you remember how that season turned out for the team?

          1. Proof that this isn’t really that big of a deal if a team in chaos can still manage to win a SuperBowl together.

  12. Ann Killion:
    “And from what I’ve been told, the tension isn’t just upstairs in the building. One source with inside knowledge of the team says that Harbaugh’s act has worn thin in the locker room, particularly among some key “face of the 49ers” type players. While the team is winning, that’s not a problem. But a few losses could expose a widening rift.”

    Of all the hoopla in the ongoing Harbaugh saga of the past two weeks, this characterization of Harbaugh is the most alarming and surprising to me.
    I’ve been of the mindset that one of Harbaugh’ best strengths is his ability to be a great locker room presence.
    If this story is proven to be true, then Harbaugh’ tenure as head coach could be in more trouble than the media has let on.

    Could Harbaugh be the next Billy Martin or to some extent, Don Nelson?
    Good coach/manager who could not get out of their own way by becoming polarizing figures after a few years.
    I hope that Harbaugh’ competitive nature and unfathomable will to win is directed properly and not causing a divisive effect among the players.

    1. Agreed AES. If I recall correctly it was speculated in some media circles from very early on that Harbaugh’s “act” would get old with the players at some point. If what Killion says is true they may be reaching that point.

      1. They said, and I said the same thing about Pete Carroll. Who by the way has qualified to enter into the great category according to team Grant/Hammer, even though he did not start his NFL career so great….

        1. Yep. A couple National Championship wins in college and a Super Bowl title definitely gets Carroll in that conversation.

  13. “weird at times” …
    “insanely competitive”…

    wife #2 (that would be Sarah) sez:
    you have no idea & yes, the clock is ticking.
    He may move, but she & the kids may stay.
    (sorta like Miah down in Coronado, huh?)

  14. This just in. Bubba Paris declared when Walsh retired he lost “180 pounds of genius”. Ooh, locker room turmoil.

    Too bad there wasn’t an internet rife with breathless bloggers back then to let us know all about it.

  15. No offense to the readers here, but if you continue to read this blog and use it as a forum for conversation, I’d say Grant is doing something right.

    It’s the offseason and he’s sparking conversation. I won’t stand by all the content, but there’s something to be said about keeping Niner talk alive, whether it be weak gossip or otherwise.

  16. We should get a nice new coach now that we have a nice new stadium.
    A nice and friendly guy who answers all of Grant’s questions.
    One who doesn’t yell and has his hair combed the right way.
    One who doesn’t fight with his GM……………..
    And one that wont get us all worried about getting to the SB
    Is Mariucci still available?

    1. Good comment Dee but you left out that we should let Grant and Lowell and Tim and Ann have the right to approve or disaprove of any New Coaching hires.

    2. Mariucci might be available, but will he wear khakis?

      There’s only three coaches or ex-coach’s who I would trust to win a SB with this team.
      1. Jimmy Johnson.
      2. Bill Parcells
      3. Tony Dungy
      Except for Dungy, Johnson and Parcells would quickly wear-out their welcome ala Billy Martin and Ozzie Guillen.
      But I guess that’s the price you pay a SB ring around here.

  17. Jed York is showing his incompetence, and that only reinforces the necessity of John Madden’s words of wisdom. John said “It’s easier to find a suit.”

    Carmen Policy was right when he said that what’s needed now is some subtle tweaking of psychology to bring both sides (Baalke and Harbaugh) together. However, instead of squashing this, Jed left things open for Killion to expose once again by probably talking to a disgruntled player like La Micheal James. Jed York went to Florida with his family and instead of fixing the problem by sitting down with Harbaugh and Baalke, and instead of working on a new contract with Harbaugh (who, btw, is the gate keeper to Boldin, Crabtree and Kaepernick contracts), Jed has his toes in the sand, reading blogs.

    Another year without a new contract for Harbaugh with an air of uncertainty in Santa Clara? Yeah, that’s a good policy. ESPN recently wrote that Harbaugh is the one attracting free agents and getting current players to take less. The 49ers need Harbaugh more than Harbaugh needs the 49ers. So not re-signing Harbaugh, and not making Harbaugh’s contract priority number one is hurting the 49ers’ chances of closing the rift between Baalke and Harbaugh, and it’s making negotiations with current players a lot more difficult to settle. What happened to Boldin’s contract negotiations looking good?

    Instead of Jed York having the psychological and business acumen to squash this, closing the door on future articles like Killion’s today, Jed flew to Florida. Don’t give me this, “Owners’ meeting” crap. A good and attentive owner fixes problems immediately for the sake of sustainability. Looks like Jed and his family haven’t learned anything from Eddie D burning Bill Walsh out before Bill’s time. If Eddie was smart, and cared about Jed’s legacy, Eddie would be counseling Jed right now about how to fix this problem with long-term Harbaugh happiness in mind. Harbaugh’s a relatively young head coach. He clearly doesn’t have all the answers. Tom Coughlin? John Wooden? Larry Bird? The past is riddled with former coaches and lessons they’ve past on. If Jed loses Harbaugh, say hello to another decade of incompetent, impotent 49er football.

    Jed doesn’t have the experience to draw from to squash this, and that’s why John Madden’s comments were so important to the Bay Area: You don’t let Jim Harbaugh go no matter what. He may not be well liked, but coaching, and learning how to sustain your job while keeping the players listening to you (Larry Bird) should be the goal that Jed can’t wrap his lucky sperm around (maybe not the right metaphor here).

    The importance of John Madden’s words are this: Instead of Jed squashing the problem with, like Carmen Policy said with, “Subtle acumen,” Jed is only looking at public opinion and seeing who wins the public opinion battle between Harbaugh and Baalke. That’s a no brainer. It’s Harbaugh all the way. But Jed only makes decisions based on the polls. And that, my friends, is how we got Mike Singletary as a head coach. Jed has no insights of his own and it could cost him the best NFL head coach to be hired in decades. Harbaugh’s a work in progress, not a one term president.

  18. This is a BS article. First you have the “source” not to be named, OK so that automatically has zero credibility. Second all it says is his “act” has worn thing but there is zero mention of anything specific that coach is doing that is annoying anybody. So apparently this is a “source’ that says that team is getting tired of “acts” that aren’t actually described or mentioned.

    When a source is named and specific deeds are explained then I’ll pay attention.

    1. You can find an anonymous source in ANY lockerroom who will say something negative about the coach.
      Why is this news?!?!?!?!?
      In this case this ‘journalist’ doesn’t even hint that this ‘source’ is a player.
      I think it is the janitor.

  19. It’s too bad that we don’t have access to someone associated with the blog who has the ability to actually go and ask a player what they think of this report; “Justin Smith, Ann Killion claims that a “source” claims that Harbaugh’s act in the locker room is wearing thin. What is your take on that?”

    It would be great if we had someone that is part of this blog that had that kind of access to the team that could easily go and clear something like this up by getting it straight from the horses mouth.

        1. didn’t you just say York didn’t call it BS? what were you referring to then or is York not an executive?

      1. Why not. If they disagree with the report and think it’s BS they will want to clear it up because they respect their coach. I also think there are plenty of men on that team that will put their name to something they say because that is what men do. If Grant came back and said that he spoke to players that refused to allow their name to be printed but that they agreed completely with the report, well then that might be different.

        I think there will be lots of players on the team eager to clear up the coaches name and would gladly put their name to it.

        1. They would deny it to the media regardless of the validity. They wouldn’t want their name associated with it.

            1. Whitner speaks out on twitter all the time. Just the other day he ranted on twitter about’s free agent rankings. In the playoffs he called out a Buffalo reporter on twitter for tweeting about Kaepernick’s hat at his post-game press conference. Whitner hasn’t tweeted out about this locker room report.

              Anthony Davis also speaks out on twitter. Patrick Willis has a twitter. Aldon Smith has a twitter. Ahmad Brooks has a twitter. Joe Staley has a twitter. Vernon Davis has a twitter.

          1. They will say that there is nothing to the reports regardless. Why would they say to the media, “Yeah, coach is grinding way too hard. If he doesn’t back off we’ll start shutting him down.”

            Who does that?

          2. Ask someone and prove me wrong. Ask a player, not an executive, to respond on the report and let us know what they say. If they say they don’t want to or they don’t want to put their name to it and they agree then I’ll eat my crow, big deal. Otherwise if I’m right you’d get to be the guy who wrote the article on how Killion was full of dookie.

          3. They will say that there is nothing to the reports regardless. Why would they say to the media, “Yeah, coach is grinding way too hard. If he doesn’t back off we’ll start shutting him down.”

            Who does that?
            They wouldn’t, they would say no comment or they would only comment if they could be kept anonymous and then we’d have some sort of validation. I never intimated that I expected someone to say something like that Jack, stay on subject. Ive from the start said give a player the opportunity to defend the coach, not blast him.

          4. It just seems like such an easy thing to do and as a reporter I would have done it by default personally. I don’t know what the rules are for contacting players but if able to I would be trying to get responses from the horses mouth on the subject rather then speculate.

            If there is truth to the report then I would expect to find more players then not that simply don’t want to touch it or agree under a veil of anonymity. But if there isn’t I would expect to find players that are willing to say so and even with their names.

            However I wouldn’t guess, I’d let the players speak for themselves.

            If I’m wrong then hell, add it to the list, I don’t pretend to walk on water.

          5. Coffee,

            Here’s the answer to your question.

            “Anquan Boldin on Jim Harbaugh: ‘I don’t think there’s any rift. I heard of no griping in the locker room.”

          6. What was Coffee expecting? It would reflect poorly on Boldin for him to say any different on the record.

            I don’t see Boldin being disingenuous Grant.

          7. To be fair, Boldin said a lot more than that. When asked what led him to re-sign with the 49ers, he mentioned two things – not wanting to uproot his family and Jim Harbaugh.

            “He had a big role in me coming back,” Boldin said. “He’s a guy that I had a real good relationship with.”

            He also said:

            When I did hear about it, I kind of laughed because it was exactly that: I don’t think anyone in our locker room has an issue with coach Harbaugh. … And the way our locker room is built, we have an open-door policy. If anybody has a concern or wants to voice their opinion, they’re more than welcome to. There have been times where we have voiced our concerns as players and coach Harbaugh has listened to and taken into consideration how we felt as players.


            So I don’t there’s any rift between players and coaches, particularly coach Harbaugh. Like I said, he has a great rapport with all the guys that I know of. I’ve heard of no griping in the locker room when it comes to coach Harbaugh. Like I said, he’s a guy that wants to win. And everybody in the locker room wants to do the same thing. We’re pretty much usually on the same page and if we’re not, we have it to where we can go talk to him and he listens to us

            That goes beyond Boldin being politically correct.

          8. Geez you two, even when it’s in your face you simply cant admit to being wrong about something. Well you are.

          9. Coffee,

            I did not see the whole context of Boldin’s comments until Claude’s post, and if Boldin speaks for the entire team I am indeed wrong. Not the first time. Not the last.

  20. Regardless of hype and rumor, nothing can take away from the fact that Harbaugh came into a locker room that was a few steps away from the disaster in Tampa… A locker room filled with talent and no discipline or leadership. Jim came in and brought all the pieces to puzzle together and marched his troops to 3 straight NFC championships. Yes, no Bowl win but lets be honest here, he is a coach not a player.. He does his job and they are expected to do theirs in the field. What will it take to get over the hump??? We can all speculate all we want but its up to the players to show up and lay it on the line, every weekend, all season long!! And even then, you can still lose the big the game (Undefeated Patriots vs Giants).. It’s football and that’s why we love the sport so much, unpredictable excitement, with the occasional media twist such as this… Or even better the Marshawn Lynch Media Harassment!!

  21. I heard that CK loves throwing interceptions.
    I heard that Gore say he hates the Niners.
    I heard that the Smith guys are really blood brothers.
    I heard the Niners are moving to Alaska.

    Okay Grant and Jack I just started a bunch of rumors, no facts no nothing but what I heard. Jump on the five fact less rumors I just mentioned. Get the picture yet. No facts no merit.

    1. So you’re accusing Killion of having zero integrity? Why would she jeopardize her entire career for one story?

      1. Grant I just want some facts give me something with facts. If Killion wont divulge her sources then she has no merit. People take things out of context quite often and she would not be the first reporter to get it wrong. I cant believe the story until it is proven factual and that may not ever happen. I have zero use for the ‘I cant divulge my sources’ unless it involves the criminal element. I am on the fence with this story and in no way am I trying to defend Harbaugh.

  22. Are you kidding me?!?!? We went through years of losing seasons, winning coaches are harder to come by than QBs and you guys want to dump him? When did football become a place for you chicks to read gossip columns like Ann Killion?!?!? Oh because Grant Cohn is a baby who has no access to the 49ers because his father burned all the bridges. How does one crap story ruin a reporters career. Half of what you write is lies and rumor, that is all this is. Get a player to talk and then it is a story.

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