Back in 2009 the NFL hiring season was on and Jim Harbaugh, then the head coach of Stanford, was not the hot name that he is today. But he was still getting interviews.
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Jets interviewed him before hiring Rex Ryan. The Lions then talked with Harbaugh before settling on Jim Schwartz.
And, before they hired Todd Haley, the Chiefs, too, inquired about Harbaugh.
And then, the day after Harbaugh signed his extension, the Kansas City Chiefs weighed in, seeing if the Stanford coach would be interested in leaving, sources said. The irony was that Harbaugh's wife, Sarah, is from Kansas City. Had the Chiefs called 48 hours earlier, before Harbaugh gave his word and signature to Stanford on an extension, he might have been enticed. But the Chiefs were a little late, a delay-of-game penalty that would haunt them. Harbaugh stayed at Stanford, and Kansas City hired Todd Haley.
The news about Harbaugh interviewing with the Jets and Lions made its way to the media. The Chiefs never did.
Scott Pioli was formally hired on January 13, 2009. Harbaugh issued a statement on his commitment to Stanford on that same day.
My how things would be different.
Would Harbaugh still be here? Would Matt Cassel be the Chiefs quarterback? What about Romeo Crennel, Charlie Weis, Andy Reid and the others we've seen in Kansas City since then?
Yeah, I obviously would want Harbaugh knowing what I know now. But back then I bet the only thing that would pop into my mind was that January 1996 playoff game Harbaugh's damn Colts beat the Chiefs, 10-7.