This is a bad thing for Pete Carroll and a bad thing for major college football.
Besides going back to an otherwise unsuccessful venture in the NFL (Carroll is 33-31 in four NFL seasons), he’s leaving what could possibly be a dynasty as one of America’s proudest institutions of college football — despite allegations of wrongdoing in the Reggie Bush era. His team, his name and the Trojan symbol are all synonymous with college football success.
Carroll made that happen.
More importantly, year in and year out, he brings the Pac-10 — the west coast — legitimacy in major college football. Losing him is a blow to other Pac-10 teams who continually fail to reach major bowls, thus missing out on all of the money that is split between the universities.
Seattle on the other hand, is a lost cause. Stuck with a quarterback who they think is franchise-worthy (Matt Hasselbeck), burdened by a lack of dominant running options (Julius Jones, Justin Forsett), and a defense that ranked 24th in overall in the NFL, they are a project in the making.
This is going to require an overhaul. Is Pete up for that? Apparently so. Is it a smart decision. I don’t think so.
This is what I’ll call a “what-if” decision. I’m sure Pete, who has won national championships and is at the top of the college football echelon, wakes up in the middle of the night every offseason or so and thinks to himself, “Could I be this good in the NFL? What if I stuck it out?”
Every man wants to test the waters and be successful at the highest levels of his profession. It’s what makes the good guys (and gals) tick. The problem is, folks like Pete don’t realize how they’ve already proven to all onlookers that they’re the best at what they do, and that a new job at a higher level, isn’t going to change that perception.
He will always be one of the greatest coaches in football history. That’s cemented.
But here’s the trick: Pete, and other coaches and players like him, are never proving anything to us. It’s about those burning questions that keep them up at night. Right now, he’s working on proving to himself whether or not he can do it. All we can do is watch in amusement, in what could be a train wreck for a dynasty.