Singletary and SportsmanshipAuthor: AnnKillion | Filed under: Bay Area Sports
Mike Singletary and his 0-4 team take the field tonight before a national television audience and – at this point – you have to wonder what odd thing Singletary might do next.
Last week, he didn’t shake the hand of Atlanta coach Mike Smith after the game. Singletary conceded that it was “poor sportsmanship” on his part. That’s troubling on a fundamental level.
Singletary is all about leadership, values, motivation. All those things that go into sportsmanship. Without that, what does he have? A yellow Hall of Fame jacket, but in terms of coaching credentials, not too much.
Other coaches skip the handshake on rare occasions. Bill Belichick comes to mind. But Belichick is a brilliant coach. His calling card isn’t leadership, its Xs and Os. Pretty much no one would want him to come talk to room of boy scouts. But everyone would like him diagramming plays late in a tense game.
Singletary, as we are learning, is not a brilliant coach. He’s not even a very good coach at this point. He may be at some point – though that is becoming increasingly doubtful with every week. Singletary’s strength is his leadership. But he keeps poking holes in his leadership credentials. Being a leader is more than just spouting inspirational words in a deep voice. It has to do with walking the talk. Being a good sport. Handling adversity.
So far this season, Singletary has been coming up short on that.
On another, somewhat embarrassing note, some media members received a DVD in the mail this week. It’s title?
“Get Coached by Mike Singletary: Inspiration, Motivation, Action.”
On the back of the case, we are told – in oddly religious and military terms – that “Life is a game you want to win. Get Coached – no longer just for the chosen few.” Mike is going to teach us about “Success – How badly do you want it?” Mike will deliver his “arsenal of powerful messages.” Among the topics covered: Leadership, Foundation of Integrity, Relationships, Loyalty (perhaps Jimmy Raye would like to take a look at those last two sections). Not sure if the postgame handshake blowoff or the media interview meltdown are covered.
Perhaps the distributor should have waited to release the DVD until the 49ers had actually won a football game they want to win.