Jed York

BREAKING: Jim Harbaugh didn’t respect Jed York

harbaugh york

Our old friend and former contributor Kyle “Ruthless Sports Guy” McLorg dropped an interesting tidbit during last night’s Warriors game.

Based on McLorg’s sourcing in the past, I have no doubt that this story is true in some sense. It’s uncertain whether Jim Harbaugh was referring to his players as “mighty men” and setting them apart from Jed York in that way, or if he meant to describe York as an adolescent to humiliate him in front of 50-odd people.

Based on past history, I think most of us would assume the latter. And if our assumption is correct, it would tell us that Harbaugh had no plans to coach the team after 2014, because there’s no way anyone in the history of working relationships could expect to keep a job after effectively referring to his or her millionaire boss as a child — in any setting.

Sure, it’s an amusing tale. And Harbaugh wanting the suits out of the locker room, which he seemed to consider a sanctuary of sorts for himself and his players, would fit with what we’ve seen from him before. Unless I’m imagining things, he certainly seemed to change expression after he yelled “who’s got it better than us,” turned around, and saw Trent Baalke and York after the 49ers beat the Chiefs last season.

However, “mutual” (which is second only to “class” when it comes to eyeroll-provoking words in Ninerland), certainly didn’t pertain to “respect” when it came to the relationship between these two. And it would appear that Harbaugh and the 49ers parting ways had much more to do with a mutual dislike between Harbaugh and York than a power struggle between the former head coach and current general manager.

We don’t know if there was a specific reason why Harbaugh would give York the “men only” treatment. Maybe a leak about Harbaugh’s hold on the team had come out in the hours/days prior, and Harbaugh assumed York was the source. One could easily see Harbaugh believing strongly that to be a “man,” one must say things to another man’s face instead of whispering (or texting) anonymously to reporters.

Or, perhaps it’s as simple as saying that Harbaugh is extremely rude to people he doesn’t like. As Ralph Barbieri often said, “two things can be equally true.”

The timing of this incident is also unknown. “Midway” though the season could mean October, when things still seemed to be in flux, or after the Thanksgiving Massacre. And we all knew that Harbaugh was on his way out once York sent that tweet apologizing to “#49ersfaithful” for his employees’ performance against Seattle (a point that was hammered home again when they lost in Oakland).

Here’s what we know, and probably knew all along: The relationship between York and Harbaugh was already fractured before the 2014 season began. What McLorg’s information tells us is that things seemed to get worse as their final season together progressed, which most of us already assumed.

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