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A Brief Tribute to Coach Tomlin

February 09, 2009 by Still Mill

A tribute to Coach Tomlin.....

A Brief Tribute to Coach Tomlin


Amidst the on-going euphoria of the big Super Bowl win, we felt a brief tribute to Coach Mike Tomlin was highly warranted.


Little background information needs to be presented about Coach Tomlin, as the media coverage on The Coach both before and after the Super Bowl was quite thorough.


What Tomlin has done, though, deserves maximum recognition.He took over an underachieving team that had been led (sic) in 2006 by The Mailman, Billy Cowher, who clearly was disinterested in coaching at the point and basically mailed it in with a lame, weak-assed, half-hearted effort.


Tomlin arrived to the Stillers amidst a country club atmosphere, and some veterans weren�t all too keen upon his arrival.But unlike his predecessor, Tomlin had standards that he intended to upkeep, and he never flinched from any veteran bellyaching.�� As a rookie coach, he guided the team to an AFC North title, although the Stillers lost in their lone playoff game (to the Jags).


In 2008, Tomlin faced the NFL�s toughest schedule��in fact, the toughest schedule in over 25 years.Undaunted, he went to work right from the get-go, and did the right thing by disciplining the over-bloated nose tackle, Fat Casey Hampton, at camp.Under the Cowhard regime, Hampton -- just like Levon Kirkland and Joel Steed before him -- was allowed to come and go as he pleased, with total disregard to his girth, weight, and conditioning.Tomlin clamped down on that nonsense, and the rest of the roster quickly realized that Tomlin meant business.


Midway through the season, just a few days before a big game against the defending champion Giants, WR Tonio Holmes was arrested for possession of Marjuana blunts in his vehicle.This wasn�t an NFL offense, but Tomlin nonetheless chose to discipline Holmes by deactivating him versus the Giants.The Stillers lost a tough, close game, and certainly could have used Holmes, but Tomlin felt it best to win the war, not merely this single, particular battle.


The Stillers finished the �08 campaign with an impressive 12-4 record, despite a slew of injuries that would have crippled many teams.Unlike the wailing and bawling that you�d hear from Billy Cowher whenever a star player was injured, Tomlin refused to allows injuries to be used as a weak-assed excuse.The team then clawed its way through the playoffs, culminating in a come-from-behind victory in the Sup Bowl.The player who provided a huge scoring spark in all 3 playoff wins was none other than Tonio Holmes, the man who�d been deactivated for the Giants game.


After the Super Bowl, it was revealed that Tomlin had never held the Lombardi Trophy the way many of the players had."I actually never even touched it," he said. "I see five of them every day when I go to work. I know what they look like. I'm just glad that I can do my part in terms of contributing to that trophy case."Contrast this with Billy Cowher, who worshipped the goofy, meaningless AFC trophy after the Jan. 1996 win over lowly Indianapolis as though he�d just found The Holy Grail.Then, after the Stillers won Super Bowl 40 in spite of -- not because of -- him, Cowhard rubbed and kissed all over the Lombardi as though it were his first girlfriend.��


Tomlin�s modest football background is something that always has impressed me.�� In high school at Denbigh High School in Newport News, VA, Tomlin was an average, hum-drum WR.Not only was he not all-state, he also wasn�t all-region, all-district, all-section, or all-anything.�� But his hustle on the field inspired William & Mary to give him a scholarship.�� He had a nice, although hardly spectacular, career at W&M, but after that, he never played a down of football in the NFL, thereby dispelling the bullshit myth that �you have to play in the NFL in order to understand it and coach in it.�


It�s laughable to look back at Cowhard�s final season.With Cowhard all but out the door, most fans trembled in fear, asking, �If Lord Billy were to leave, who could possibly replace him?Who?Name one coach who could possibly come in and have even half the success of Billy Cowher?���� The general feeling among the idiot masses out there was that Cowhard was a divine saint who could not possibly be replaced unless Jesus Christ himself rose again and applied for the job.�� In comes a total unknown, Tomlin -- a guy who had never been a head coach at any level -- who far surpassed anything that Billy had ever done in his first 12 years as a HC in the NFL.In fact, he surpassed the combined everything Cowhard had done during his first 12 years.


Perhaps most impressively, Tomlin continually exudes a highly professional, �the team is far more important than I� attitude.Contrast this with Cowhard, who, after his 2nd AFCC choke-job, publicly threatened (in March 1998) to quit and sign with Cleveland (a city that didn�t even have an NFL team yet), despite being under contact to coach the Pittsburgh Stillers. Absolutely nothing that Tomlin has said or done gives even the slightest hint that he�d even think about, much less try, such a boorish, classless, juvenilish stunt.


In all, we here at can�t say enough about Coach Tomlin.He�s carried us to the Promised Land in only his 2nd season on the job, and just as importantly, he�s done it with a high degree of class, commitment, leadership, and dedication.��


Let�s raise a cold bottle of Iron City to THE MAN, Coach Mike Tomlin!!��� This 6-pack is on us, Coach!!



Still Mill and -- �When it comes to the analysis of the Pittsburgh Stillers, no one else comes close�.�


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