The San Francisco 49ers took a big step towards rebuilding for their future exactly one year ago from today. With many coaches on the move, the franchise hired Jim Harbaugh to become their head coach after a ton of success with the Stanford Cardinal. At the time, the move was well-received by those in the industry, but everyone seemed to hold judgement until the season began.
365 days later, are you happy with the hiring?
(The answer should be yes.)
With Harbaugh in command, the 49ers had their best season in decades with an impressive record of 13-3. San Francisco won the NFC West without any trouble and they were rewarded for their efforts with a first round bye in the playoffs. Anyone has a chance at this point, but fans have to be excited about their chance at a Super Bowl.
As for the development of various players and rookies, Aldon Smith burst onto the scene with a monster debut season. Alex Smith, while inconsistent at times, played much better than he had in recent years and the 49ers defense as a whole ranked among the best in the league. And with the team still relatively young, there are bright days ahead for the organization.
"This is the perfect competitive opportunity for me and the San Francisco organization," Harbaugh said at the press conference. "I accept this competitive challenge willingly, and look forward to it."
It's safe to say that mission was accomplished in the first year. What will year two bring?