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Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
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|Tom Cable, expected to be named permanent head coach of the Raiders at a noon press conference tomorrow, is a good fit for the team.|
This is, of course, not a major shock. Cable has long been expected to retain the job he took over on a temporary basis last Sept. 30 when coach Lane Kiffin was fired.
Cable was Oakland's offensive line coach and he was known as one of the better offensive line coaches in the league. He was 11-35 in four years at Idaho as head coach and was 4-8 as Oakland's interim coach.
Cable has been helping interview assistant coaching prospects and he represented the Raiders at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama last month. There were reports last week that other candidates were told Cable was, indeed, the guy.
Now, it is about to become official.
Cable had a reputation last season as a very encouraging and enthusiastic coach. He still worked with the offensive line when he was the head coach and was positive after both wins and losses.
He campaigned openly for the full-time job at the end of the season. He made good points in his pitch. He said the Raiders needed stability.
He will be the team's sixth full-time head coach this decade. Cable truly wants to be in Oakland and that's important. You get the feeling he is with the Raiders because he wants to take the team, which has been a league worst 24-72 during the past six years, back to the playoffs and not to better his career on the short term and bolt somewhere else.
He seems loyal to Al Davis. He wants to win with the Raiders.
Will he? It will be difficult but it's been difficult for every coach there. You might as well have a coach who wants to be there.
I believe Cable had two major things going in his favor (other than the fact that no established coach showed interest). First, he ended the season with solid wins over Houston and Tampa Bay. The Raiders were thumped hard several times under Cable's watch but he ended the season strong. In a city that has a short memory concerning its NFL team, that is important.
Raider Nation thinks it can win under Cable.
Also, Cable had the support of several players, including quarterback JaMarcus Russell, who is the centerpiece of the organization. Times have been tough in Oakland and the team is just not going to attract the same coaching candidates other teams are. With that in mind, getting a solid coach like Cable who has enthusiasm and who is well liked by the team, qualifies as a good hire.