But that’s what things have come to these days. We’ve become a need-to-know-right-now society and the Internet has enabled us to do that with many things. As this is being typed, the Redskins’ London Fletcher is annoucing he will probably retire after this season and every word is being transmitted instantly.
We’ve also become a need-to-win-big-right-now society, a very impatient society. Coaches get no leeway, even the reigning Super Bowl championship coach. Everyone smart enough to sign up for Facebook or Twitter or create a blog (and you don’t have to be terribly smart to do any of that) is a potential critic.
Winning doesn’t seem to bring joy, it seems to bring relief.
Cowher seems to have the right idea. He resigned in 2007 after 15 seasons with the Steelers, a Super Bowl title and a record of 149-90-1. He was four months shy of his 50th birthday when he gave up coaching. He was probably as safe as any coach in the business but he left on his own terms and became a television analyst.
One Thursday earlier this month, Cowher attended Octagon’s 30th birthday party in Washington. While his former colleagues were likely all holed up in a meeting room poring over video, Cowher was dancing and having a blast. No one was questioning his every dance move.
Sure, he’d already made his money on the sidelines but the huge and constant smile on his face sent a clear message: Life is better away from those sidelines. Far away.