- DJ Gallo, ESPN.com
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You will get sick of hearing about the HarBowl in the next two weeks. In fact, you likely already are sick of hearing about the HarBowl. Even the name itself is awful.
“Bowl” and “baugh” do not rhyme. It’s not even close. All “HarBowl” sounds like is “horrible,” and no one wants to watch a horrible football game. That’s what the Pro Bowl is for.
But media over-coverage aside, you can’t deny that two brothers coaching against each other in the biggest football game in the world is a story that would fill any family with pride. Many of you out there who have kids or will one day have kids are probably wondering how to raise two Super Bowl coaches of your own. It’s not easy, but if you follow these simple steps, you too can maybe one day watch your sons yell and scream in from of 100 million people.
Tips for Raising Super Bowl coaching sons
In the womb Many parents sing to their child in the womb or play classical music. This is wrong if you want to raise a Super Bowl coach. What you want to do is place a giant coach’s headset over the belly and then pipe in audio from game tapes or highlights of great halftime speeches. Great coaches don’t take five minutes off, so don’t let your in-utero coach lounge around for nine months doing nothing.
Sleeping Once your future coach is born, it will want to sleep. Don’t allow it to sleep more than four hours a night. Also, lots of parenting books and “experts” will tell you to put it in a crib. Idiots. Place your tiny coach-in-waiting on an old couch in an office. This is where coaches sleep and the sooner your baby gets used to it, the better.
Bathing Bathing is another activity that takes time away from studying game film. Bathing should only occur after your child accomplishes something great and baths should only be given via Gatorade shower.
Eating Look at the body of your average NFL coach. These are not healthy-looking people. Other parents might pressure you to feed your mini-coach nutritious breast milk and fruits and vegetables. No. Your child should subsist on nothing but vending machine Funyuns and delivery pizza. Remember: You’re not trying to raise a football player, you’re raising a football coach. You’ll want your baby to have a gut by six months.
Clothing Forget onesies or adorable outfits. Your children should dress every day in tan khakis and a sweatshirt.
Communication After birth, your Lil’ Lombardi will scream. A lot. Do not try to comfort the child or put a stop to the yelling. Great coaches scream all the time. If your child ever stops screaming or making ridiculous faces, you messed up.
Reading The ABCs are overrated. X's and O's are all that matters. You’ll want to have your child reading X's and O's at an assistant coach’s level by the third grade. Learning ABCs can come later, when your coach gets a book contract after winning a first Super Bowl.
Family time There is nothing else in life other than football. If your child wants to spend time with you, ground it.
Quote of the Week
Arrogant [expletives] These are the most arrogant [expletive] in the world, starting with Belichick on down.” -- Terrell Suggs, Baltimore linebacker
Wow. Someone doesn’t deal well with losing. Wait. What?
Stat of the Week
Atlanta’s elimination means that for the ninth year in a row, the team with the best regular-season record won’t win the Super Bowl title. This is a refreshing reminder that procrastination pays off. Why win a bunch of games in the regular season when you can slip into the playoffs and then win a Super Bowl like the Giants? Why look above-average in September, October and November when you can throw touchdowns in December and January like Eli Manning and Joe Flacco? Why come up with a fiscal-cliff agreement months ahead of time when you can do it at the last possible moment? Why start a term paper when it is assigned when you can bang it out the night before it’s due? America: Making Procrastination Look Good Since I’m not sure when. I’ll look into that later.
Misleading Stat of the Week
Tom Brady is 67-1 in his career at home when leading at the half. That is a remarkable record. Just like how going 18-1 in an NFL season is impressive. But. Yes, but.
It’s become apparent now: put “-1” after anything Patriots-related and it instantly becomes a punch line. Someone should make a T-shirt that just has the Patriots logo and “-1” beside it. The Boston-area sales won’t be great, but every other city will buy a few thousand.
Photos of the Week
News Conference Questions Someone Should Have Asked
Mike Smith: “Where does getting to coach the Pro Bowl rank among your career accomplishments?”
Bill Belichick: “Since you’ll just grunt a one-word response to anything I ask, I have several questions: Shouldn’t you be better at handling postseason losses by now? Do you know any defensive geniuses who could help fix your defense? Do you regret not having some random wide receiver come in and play defensive back when Aqib Talib went out? You’re the Bill Belichick that used to coach the Browns, aren’t you?”
Jim or John Harbaugh: “Who is the hot brother?”
Reader Twitter Question of the Week
Can the Canseco brothers replace the Harbaughs for the game? RT @djgalloespn Any Super Bowl questions for the Hangover?
— Edward Carifio (@WorstTwittsEver) January 21, 2013
Oh, my. This would be great. It would certainly make the Super Bowl entertaining, and not just for freak-show reasons. Jose Canseco would also make a great football coach. Really. Clock management would never be a problem for him.
Yes time travel is possible. Will explain later.
— Jose Canseco (@JoseCanseco) August 13, 2012
How Canseco didn’t get one interview is insane. Time travel bests any gimmicky offense.
Five Things I Think You Thought While Thinking Thoughts
1. The siblings of Bill Walsh, Bill Belichick and Chuck Noll have to feel like pretty big failures.
2. We spent the past week hearing about Lance Armstrong and Manti Te’o and how the sports media could no longer be complicit in creating false legends. Yes, we would all have to be more grounded and cynical. But now the Super Bowl is on the horizon.
Pretty much the whole point of the two weeks of Super Bowl pregame is to hype every player and coach and make them into sporting legends. So this will be a pretty big test. Asking the sports media to go cold turkey? At the Super Bowl? Can’t be done.
But everyone else can be free to be as cynical as you’d like. Ray Lewis’ “redemption” story? You don’t have to buy it. This Joe Flacco is the same one who has been playing the past five years? Pffft. Right. We’ll need some DNA evidence. John Harbaugh and Jim Harbaugh are brothers? Show us birth certificates.
3. People are ripping Bill Belichick on Monday for his postgame behavior, but let’s be fair. How can you say Belichick is not classy? He’s running a dynasty that hasn’t won a Super Bowl in almost eight years and counting. Most dynasties would greedily hog all of the championships, but not the Patriots. Don’t ever question Belichick’s manners or compassion.
4. People saying that Matt Ryan isn’t clutch couldn’t be farther from the truth. That late injury he suffered in the NFC Championship Game will allow him to skip the Pro Bowl without faking an injury. That’s as clutch as it gets.
5. From all accounts, Jim and John Harbaugh love and respect each other. But this is the Super Bowl. They didn’t get here by being nice to their coaching opponents. And we, as fans, don’t want an unwatchable Serena vs. Venus-type friendly Super Bowl. We want an entertaining death match. The Harbaugh who wins Super Bowl XLVII will be the one who gets under his brother’s skin using personal information only a brother can know.
Imagine it. Jim Harbaugh is asked at media day whether he thinks his brother’s team will have difficulty diagnosing the read-option. He responds: “It’s hard to say. He didn’t stop wetting his bed until he was 13, so I wouldn’t be surprised if it takes him a while to beat this, too.”
Then John Harbaugh can respond by making his brother question whether his parents even wanted him: “I’ve learned to take my brother’s comments with a grain of salt. He was born just 15 months after me, so he’s had to live his whole life knowing that he was probably a mistake. That grates at a man and makes him angry. Luckily, I was first-born, so I know my parents love me the most.”
This is the only way two weeks of horrible HarBowl coverage can be bearable.