San Francisco 49ers offensive lineman Alex Boone describes his former head coach, Jim Harbaugh, as "clinically insane" in an interview with HBO Sports' Andrea Kremer.
In Alex Boone's eyes, Jim Harbaugh is "clinically insane."
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In an interview with Andrea Kremer for HBO's "Real Sports With Bryant Gumbel" (via NBC Sports' Mike Florio) slated for airing on Tuesday, Boone, the San Francisco 49ers' offensive lineman, says Harbaugh, his former head coach, "pushed guys too far":
"He does a great job of giving you that spark, that initial boom. But after a while, you just want to kick his ass...He just keeps pushing you, and you're like, 'Dude, we got over the mountain. Stop. Let go.' He kind of wore out his welcome.
"I think he just pushed guys too far. He wanted too much, demanded too much, expected too much. You know, 'We gotta go out and do this. We gotta go out and do this. We gotta go out and do this.'
"And you'd be like, 'This guy might be clinically insane. He's crazy.'...I think if you're stuck in your ways enough, eventually people are just going to say, 'Listen, we just can't work like this.'"
Boone also told Kremer "the players had nothing to do with him getting fired." Florio interprets this as the 49ers players not buying into Harbaugh mutually parting ways with the team.
The 49ers' guard then tells Kremer he feels Harbaugh, the new Michigan Wolverines head football coach, would fare better in the collegiate ranks, per HBO (via ESPN):
"I think he's a better college coach than he would be as an NFL coach. It's different for college kids than pro players. I don't think college kids can say, 'Hey, Jim, you're pissing me off today.'"
Boone's recent comments are a sharp contrast to his defense of Harbaugh on ESPN radio affiliate 95.7 The Game when NFL analyst Deion Sanders reported the 49ers wanted him out as head coach in Sept. 2014.
In his defense, Boone told 95.7 The Game "everybody loves Harbaugh":
"If you're not in our locker room, then keep the 49ers' name out of your mouth. Let's just do that. Because you have no idea what goes on in our locker room.
"I know for a fact that everybody loves Harbaugh. He's a great guy. How can you not want to win for a guy that wears cleats during the game? Come on now. Have you not seen that guy's energy? He's excited 24/7.
"You've got to love to play for a guy like that. That's what football is all about."
In his conversation with Kremer this week (via Florio), Harbaugh did admit he wore out his welcome with the 49ers.
Kremer: "You always didn't play well with others, necessarily."
Harbaugh: "Yeah, people say that."
Kremer: "Well, what do you say?"
Harbaugh: "It must be true, yeah. Sometimes I'd wear out my welcome."
Kremer: "What does that mean you wear out your welcome?"
Harbaugh: "They just don't want to be around you after a while."
Florio adds the press copy of Harbaugh's HBO interview shows audio and video of him yelling at his Wolverines players in spring practice to "huddle the f--k up."
"I'm just telling you the right way to do it. If you want to look at me with that look, go f-----g someplace else," Harbaugh was also overheard as saying in the HBO video (via Florio) to one of his Michigan players.
Former 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver sprang to Harbaugh's defense on Monday. He posted an Instagram photo of him and his former head coach, a USA Today Sports headline of the Boone story and the following caption:
"LOL...Funny how ppl talk about u when You not around but quite in ya face!! 3/4 years went to NFCchampionship/Super Bowl, that's what we play for!! "ThatswhatHEbrung #HEISAGOODCOACH #RESPECTHIM."
SFGate.com's Eric Branch describes Cullvier's relationship with Harbaugh, whom he spent four seasons with in San Francisco, as "tight." Culliver giving the ball to and hugging Harbaugh after an interception in a 16-10 win over the New York Giants in Nov. 2014 was a manifestation of this.
Culliver signed with the Washington Redskins last month, per SFGate.com.
Harbaugh signed a lucrative, six-year deal reportedly worth $48 million with the Michigan Wolverines in Dec. 2014, per ESPN.
He concluded his four-year NFL head coaching stint with the San Francisco 49ers with a 44-19 (.695) win-loss record, per Pro-Football-Reference.com.
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