Following the firing of Mike Singletary, much was said regarding the 49ers front office structure going forward. Jed York was adamant that a general manager would be hired, and the hopes of fans would then ride with that general manager, because all the power would be his. The mystery candidate (hah) would make the head coaching hire and have final say on essentially everything related to San Francisco's football operations.
Naturally, I began my immediate defense of Trent Baalke while simultaneously decreeing that he would not be even considered for the 49ers general manager position. I reasoned that he just didn't have the experience or clout necessary to bring in that coaching hire, and therefore he wouldn't make the cut - but I did profess that I think he's a great football mind and strong personality, which led to me hoping that he was kept on board as a personnel man.
Well, I've just got the taste of my own foot out of my mouth and I couldn't be happier with the way things have turned out. I'm also happy that I no longer have a foot in my mouth, but that's slightly below my elation that I just discovered a ten dollar bill in my shoe for some reason. But back to the pertinent happiness - the one of Trent Baalke not only sticking with the organization, but also proving me wrong doubly by being hired into the general manager position and being the point-man on the ever-so-important hiring of Jim Harbaugh.
We'll never know just how much Baalke had to do with things and how much of it was Jed York, but reports, that I happen to believe, came out regarding the situation and they seemed to reflect that Baalke was definitely the go-to guy. This is good, honestly - good that our first time general manager was able to land the hot coaching candidate, with or without the help of Bay Area bias. At any rate, I liked Baalke and a decent number of you seemed to like him as well. The majority of us were still critical of the move at first, mostly with the way the "search" was handled, but it did appear that the 49ers conducted actual interviews with a few candidates.
Immediately following the hire, the question was asked "Will Baalke make a good General Manager for the 49ers?" and 74% (922 votes) answered "yes." 25% (318 votes) responded with "no." Later on, the poll question was "Without factoring in Jim Harbaugh, on a scale of 1 to 10 how would you rate the Baalke promotion?" The leading vote was 7 with 20%. Five, six and eight were not far behind, and then trailing those two was ... one.
Now I ask you folks - armed with the knowledge that Trent Baalke was a factor in the hiring of Jim Harbaugh (in my mind, a significant factor), the league's hottest coaching candidate, what do you think of the promotion?