Has anyone heard that when Super Bowl XLVII between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers finally gets around to kicking off this Sunday, that there will be brothers serving as the head coach of each team?
Well, of course everyone has heard that John Harbaugh will coach the Ravens and his younger brother, Jim, will be on the 49ers sideline, at least everyone that has even a modicum of interest in any newsworthy item in the ole USA. I have to admit, the storyline of one brother coaching against the other in the world’s most important football game (apologies to diehard soccer fans) is as compelling as it gets.
Many fans will likely be sick of the hype this storyline has received by the time the game kicks off some time around 6:30 Sunday evening. Even so, the wager here, if there were a wager, is that this battle of the brothers Harbaugh will have the biggest draw ever of non-football fans. You know, people that would actually not watch the game for any other reason. Still, almost every year the pre Super Bowl hype usually is way over done and leads to a disappointing game.
The cool thing with brothers coaching against each other is that no matter how the game goes, there is something to keep you focused. If it’s close, you have a compelling game to watch as well as the sibling drama. If the game gets away from one of the teams, you get to see if one bro will run it up on the other. In that case, I am already laughing out loud at the CBS cameras showing mother Harbaugh, Jackie and her reaction.
Jack Harbaugh is the dad and if you didn’t already know, he was, you’ll never guess…….. a football coach! What a shocker.
Anyway, back to the sons. They are about as close in age as could reasonably be expected, separated by exactly 15 months. John, 50, was born on 9/23/62. Jim checked in on 12/23/63. How appropriate would it be to see the game tied at 23 at the end of regulation on Sunday?
Sunday won’t be the first confrontation between the Harbaughs as opposing coaches. In 2011, Jim’s rookie coaching season in the NFL, John’s Ravens defeated the 49ers 16-6 on Thanksgiving. But, the younger Harbaugh’s rise in the coaching ranks has been notable. Things took off for the younger Harbaugh when he went to Stanford in 2007. It is at Stanford where he recruited, and developed quarterback Andrew Luck into the first pick of last year’s NFL draft. Now, in his second season, he is in the Super Bowl.
Jim’s 49ers are currently a 3 1/2 point favorite Sunday and there is no reason to expect this game will need the Harbaugh factor to be interesting, but it’s a great option to have.