Monday, April 29, 2013

In bizarre fashion, Dolphins owner rips Sparano


Tony Sparano is two jobs removed from the Miami Dolphins, but apparently his old boss is still bitter. (photo: Corey Seeman, Flickr)

During an appearance on Dan Le Batard's show on 790 The Ticket, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross was very descriptive when discussing Sparano's soured tenure in Miami, saying the former head coach "damaged the whole organization."

The Dolphins went coach-hunting in 2011 despite their still having Sparano as an employee. When they didn't find what they were looking for, they kept Sparano on as the team's leader. Sparano was fired at the end of the next season.

“He could never put it behind him,” Ross said of the apparent grudge Sparano held about Ross courting prospective coach Jim Harbaugh while Sparano was still the team's coach, via the Miami Herald. “I don’t think he was the right head coach for the Miami Dolphins. I didn’t hire him. We’re a much better organization today than then.”

Ross owns the team, but he "didn't hire him." Oh.

The soon-to-be-73-year-old, however, has no problem taking credit for acquiring the services of now-head coach Joe Philbin.

“This organization is functioning the best since the [Don] Shula days, [because] I picked the head coach with Jeff Ireland," Ross said. "People see this organization is really on the uptick.”

Sparano served as the New York Jets' offensive coordinator last year but was fired after one season. He was then hired by the Oakland Raiders to coach the offensive line.

Sparano has clearly struggled the past few years, but Ross's railing against his team's former head coach is off-putting, especially when a player like Jason Taylor came to Sparano's defense following his departure.

"If you look at the way this season has gone, starting 0-7, I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a coach or a guy anywhere that could keep a team together, keep a team going and really kind of start over from scratch after seven losses and get this team rolling," Taylor said the week Sparano was fired from the Dolphins.

"I think it's a really testament to the kind of guy Tony is... I don't think I've ever met a tougher person than Tony Sparano. He's unbelievable."

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