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Dan Jenkins
September 16, 1974
The NFL coaches are perceptively and irreverently described by an old fan
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September 16, 1974

Ever See So Many Geniuses?

The NFL coaches are perceptively and irreverently described by an old fan

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Schnellenberger got the Baltimore job last year because of his Miami success, but he had a problem. The Colts had an Ivy Leaguer, Marty Domres, for a quarterback. They had several veterans who expressed a desire to see General Manager Joe Thomas hanging upside down next to Mussolini in the Milan train station. And there was no offense to be in charge of.

Immediately Schnellenberger took Baltimore from a five-game winning season to a four-game winning season, and 20 NFL teams outgained the Colts, but everybody agreed there was less dissension.

In the meantime Joe Thomas promises he will yet build the Colts into another Miami. He has promised this to the Baltimore owners, who are still concealing their identities because Carroll Rosenbloom made such a good deal for himself in L.A.

Schnellenberger has another major worry. Joe Thomas once fired a head coach because he wouldn't bench Johnny Unitas.


It seems like every time a pro team is searching for a new head coach the newspapers speculate that it will be Bear Bryant, Darrell Royal, Ara Parseghian, John McKay or Joe Paterno, but it usually turns out to be Bill Arnsparger.

What then happens is that the owner winds up being hated more than ever by the fans when an Arnsparger doesn't become another Lombardi—especially since the owner has already pointed out that Vince himself was once an assistant.

Wellington Mara is not a hated man, of course. Not by the Giants' 42,000 season-ticket holders. He is only hated by a few million people who don't think he ought to move the team to another state and still call it the New York Giants.

Arnsparger may have already discovered that right now there really isn't a Giant team to move, or coach. This will keep him from hearing "Goodby Arn" up in New Haven for at least two games.

Arnsparger is credited with designing the Dolphins' "famous" 5-3 defense, which the Miami sportswriters thought was something new.

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