MOOCH GOING TO MOTOWN: Steeve Mariucci is set to become the next head coach of the Detroit Lions, according to Len Pasquarelli of ESPN.com, who says, “the Detroit Lions and Steve Mariucci have reached agreement on all of the major components of a five-year contract, and that the deal should be completed Tuesday with an introductory press conference likely Wednesday.”
Hopefully Mooch will do better as an ex-Niner than George Seifert did.
UPDATE: Hiring the man who rebuilt the ‘Niners into a consistent playoff team after their several years of salary cap hell isn’t going to please Johnnie Cochran:
The Lions have only interviewed Mariucci for the job. That has drawn strong criticism from Cochran and civil rights attorney Cyrus Mehri.
The NFL mandates franchises interview minority candidates for head coach and high-ranking front office positions.
“The Lions have seriously threatened to undermine and potentially violate the new NFL minority hiring policy approved by team owners in December,” Cochran and Mehri said in a statement.
“Prior to conducting a single interview, general manager Matt Millen essentially crowned Steve Mariucci as the Lions’ new head coach. He might well have put up a sign at Lions headquarters reading, ‘Head Coaching Vacancy: Minorities Need Not Apply.'”
According to the Detroit Free Press, the Lions approached five minority candidates, including former Minnesota Vikings coach Dennis Green and Pittsburgh Steelers defensive coordinator Tim Lewis, but they were rejected because Mariucci was the obvious front-runner.
Sherman Lewis, who was named the Lions’ offensive coordinator last month, denied a report that he interviewed for the job.
The hiring of Mariucci figures to be a popular one with Lions fans. Detroit has not made the playoffs since 1999. Mariucci took the Niners to the postseason four times in six years.
Rich Lowry explained why Cochran seemingly must sign off on all coaching changes in his January 6th column.