I tweeted about this already but I think Bruce Springsteen’s new track, We Take Care of Our Own, has Born in the USA potential. It is a masterfully timely piece of songwriting with a potent and dangerous message. It also has a faux-patriotic hook that will surely be misused by a few candidates over the next 11 months. Give it a listen. (And yes I’m from New Jersey and yes I know.)
BOB BOSTAD AS NEW OFFENSIVE LINE COACH?
The Bears won’t make any announcements on the hiring of Bob Bostad, Gabe Carimi’s former offensive line coach at Wisconsin, as their OL coach until the Mike Tice situation is settled in Oakland. But Mike Mulligan reported on his radio show this morning that Bostad is indeed heading to Chicago for what would be a massive promotion.
Bostad left Wisconsin for Pittsburgh a few weeks back with offensive Paul Chryst. The news was not taken lightly by the Big Ten power:
Bostad’s departure is a significant loss. The offensive line has been outstanding under his tutelage, especially the last two seasons.
The Badgers had two All-Americans last season in left tackle Gabe Carimi and left guard John Moffitt, and that duo joined Bill Nagy as rookie starters in the NFL this season. The Badgers’ line last season was considered to be one of the best in school history.
He is a young, talented coach. And if Tice stays he’ll be coaching under one of the best offensive line coaches in the NFL.
ADDENDUM: THIS STORY IS BEING REPORTED AS FALSE IN PITTSBURGH. READ HERE.
Pompei Does a Nice Job Breaking Down Marc Ross
Dan Pompei spends more time writing about Marc Ross in the Tribune than he’s spent on either of the previous two candidates. (Good on ya, Dan) I usually would just post a link for you but I’ll just throw the text on here.
Ross is a veteran of three NFL teams even though he’s only 38. At 27. he became the NFL’s youngest scouting director while working for the Eagles, who gave him his first full-time NFL job.
“He loved sports and knew his stuff,” said former Eagles player personnel man John Wooten, who gave Ross his first NFL job. “With the knowledge he had, you knew he was something special. He has shown that in Philadelphia, Buffalo and New York.”
Ross also worked for Tom Modrak with the Eagles, and Modrak later hired him to be his national scout for the Bills.
“He has a great feel for what needs to be done,” Modrak said. “He’s able to see what the job is all the time. He’s a really good talent evaluator.”
It’s almost cliche to say Ross is bright, but everyone says it anyway. He has a bachelor’s degree from Princeton in sociology and a master’s in sports administration from Massachusetts. At Princeton, he played wide receiver and still holds the school record for average yards per reception in a season with 20.2 in 1993.
But those who know Ross say he isn’t one of those brainiacs who doesn’t deal well with those around him.
“He is smart about football and people,” Modrak said. “He has a feel for the room. He has the ability to pull things together. He draws from everybody around him because he’s very aware.”
That doesn’t mean Ross can’t be strong-minded. Modrak said Ross sticks to his convictions even if others disagree.
However, like former Bears general manager Jerry Angelo, Ross is considered a consensus builder.
“Here we do everything together,” Reese said. “Wherever Marc goes, he knows everybody’s voice is important. I think he’ll take that with him. We come to a consensus on guys. We don’t necessarily have one guy say this is our guy. If we can’t come to a consensus, we’ll pick somebody else.”
Ross does not have extensive administrative experience, but he has done some contracts and Reese gives him considerable autonomy.
“Reese has him run the draft, very similar to what Ernie Accorsi did with Reese,” said Wooten, who endorsed Ross in a phone conversation with Bears coach Lovie Smith. “He’s ready. He’s ready to run a team.”
“On draft day he does a tremendous job,” Reese said. “He has veteran scouts around him and young scouts around him and he manages those guys really well. He stays out all year long looking for players just like our scouts. He’s definitely qualified. Obviously I’m biased, but there’s no reason for him not to succeed. He’ll do a tremendous job wherever he goes.”
He’s the guy. It is simple as that. I would not have a terrible problem with Raye or Emery. But Ross just feels like the guy.