Pete Carroll shockingly reached out to Jim Harbaugh about Colin Kaepernick
Pete Carroll and Jim Harbaugh have a fierce rivalry that dates back to their days coaching in the same college conference, but apparently Carroll was able to put that aside when the Seattle Seahawks coach was interested in signing Colin Kaepernick a few years back.
Carroll said Thursday that the only person he called to inquire about Kaepernick prior to the Seahawks bringing the quarterback in for a visit in 2017 was Harbaugh. Harbaugh, of course, was the head coach of the San Francisco 49ers when the team drafted Kaepernick in the second round back in 2011.
“The only guy I ever talked to about it — other than just for our own internal information — I called Jim Harbaugh way back when because I respected what he would tell me,” Carroll revealed, via Marcus White of NBC Sports Bay Area. “That’s the only guy I ever talked to about it.”
Harbaugh went 2-1 as a head coach at Stanford against Carroll’s powerhouse USC team, and the desire to beat Carroll again at the NFL level was said to be one of the things Harbaugh was most excited about when he took the 49ers job. Harbaugh insisted there was no hostility between the two at the time, but no one really believed it.
Despite all that, Carroll said this week that Harbaugh’s opinion on Kaepernick held a lot of weight.
“That was before we ever visited [Kaepernick], and [Harbaugh] glowingly supported Kap and all that,” Carroll said. “That’s why we were so positive as well. He gave us reinforcement.”
Remember, this is the same Harbaugh who essentially called out Carroll’s Seahawks for cheating at one point. Any phone conversation between the two is significant, especially if the point of that conversation is to have a friendly discussion about a player.
Carroll has always had high praise for Kaepernick, and he recently said he believes one NFL team is interested in signing the free agent.