Cumberland Times-News

Local Sports

January 19, 2013

Cardinals pick Bruce Arians

New head coach promises disciplined, physical, fast team

 

TEMPE, Ariz. — After nearly 38 years in the business, at age 60, Bruce Arians finally is an NFL head coach.

And he's made it clear that he's ready to run with it.

Arians was introduced as head coach of the Arizona Cardinals on Friday, promising to build a team that's "smart, disciplined, fast and physical — accountable, no excuses."

The man who went 9-3 as interim coach in Indianapolis after Chuck Pagano left to be treated for leukemia choked up when he talked about his family, saying of his wife "this is our 15th move."

And Arians moved quickly, saying he wants a staff assembled by Sunday. He parted ways with popular Cardinals defensive coordinator Ray Horton, who in a matter of hours was named to the same position in Cleveland.

Arians will call the offensive plays himself, although he will bring in someone with the title of offensive coordinator.

He said he proved to himself last year that he can be a successful head coach.

"And it was fun," Arians said. "I got a taste of the blood."

His offense, he said, will be as aggressive as he is. He believes that teams can turn their fortunes around in a hurry.

"I'm a straight shooter," Arians said. "I don't come home with any bullets left in the gun. I think players respect honest and discipline, and we're going to work hard. They're going to be accountable, not to me, to each other. It's not my football team. Our players will decide how good they are. It's their football team. If they want to win, we'll win. I'll show them the way. I'm no magic man. I've never tried to be.

"I'll give them the plan, execute the plan with passion and energy and Cardinals will be Cardinals — disciplined, fast, physical football."

He wouldn't confirm reports that Todd Bowles, still under contract with the Philadelphia Eagles, would be his defensive coordinator in Arizona, but he certainly spoke highly of him.

"Obviously, he's very dear to me," Arians said. "He was one of my captains at Temple (where Arians was head coach for five years). He's got a bunch of Super Bowl rings as a player and he's a hell of a football coach. That's all I can say."

Arians' long history in the sport — he coached for Bear Bryant, for heaven's sake — has made him appreciate finally getting a head coaching job, although his stint in place of Pagano taught him once and for all "that I can do it."

"I didn't know if it would ever happen, and I was fine without it," he said. "It's been just a great journey, the relationships I've built over the years."

Pagano said the Cardinals are getting "a great coach but a better man."

Arians famously left the light on in Pagano's office while the coach battled leukemia, and said he wept in his car when Pagano returned to work on Christmas Eve and, when he went home for the night, turned the light out.

"What he did in my absence was truly remarkable. I am forever in debt to Bruce," Pagano said. "He is and always will be a great friend and I wish him nothing but the best as he begins this new chapter in his life."

Cardinals President Michael Bidwill said he spoke with "close to 10 candidates," a group that included Horton.

But Bidwill said he knew halfway through dinner with Arians on Wednesday night that this was the right man for the job.

"He does have a different vibe," Bidwill said. "... I had heard so many great things about him. The million-dollar question here is can a guy go from coordinator to head coach. I think he answered it in Indianapolis. Then I got a chance to visit with him and get to know him. There was just no question that he's going to be a great head coach and I'm looking forward to working with him."

Arians has emphasized the importance of building a close working relationship with his quarterback, a group that for him included a young Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger ("my other son," Arians said) and last year Andrew Luck.

In Arizona, the search will be on for a quarterback, be it someone already on the roster, such as Kevin Kolb, or a person Arians repeatedly refers to as "behind Door No. 2."

The Cardinals ranked last in the NFL in offense. Kolb was 4-2 as a starter but went down in Week 6 with a season-ending rib injury. Three other quarterbacks started as Arizona lost 10 of 11 to finish 5-11.

If Kolb returns, he probably will have to rework his contract that's due to give him $9 million, plus a $2 million roster bonus, in the coming year.

"I've seen Kevin. He can spin it," Arians said. "He's had his moments, and he's had some not-so-good moments, but he's also had the crap knocked out of him a few times."

Such as being sacked 17 times over two consecutive games.

"That's one thing I know is he's tough," Arians said. "He's proven that he's tough and that's a huge part of grit."

Arians thanked the Rooney family for his eight years in Pittsburgh, a tenure during which he won two Super Bowl rings, the last one in the Steelers' win over Arizona in 2009.

"A short time ago, this organization was 37 seconds away from the Super Bowl trophy," Arians said. "I just happened to be calling plays on the other side, got real lucky, too. That's the excitement that we want to bring back. That's our goal and our only goal."

When he parted ways with the Steelers after the 2011 season, he was supposedly in retirement. That lasted for about a week, until Pagano called, clearing the way for a remarkable season that paved the way for Arians' journey to the desert.

"I'm a lifer," Arians said. "I embrace this challenge. I can't wait to get started. We're going to have a great coaching staff, and we're going to have a great team."

 

1
Text Only
Local Sports
  • Washington’s Bradley Beal Wizards win playoff opener

    CHICAGO — Nene dominated with 24 points, Trevor Ariza scored 18, and the Washington Wizards rallied from 13 down to beat the Chicago Bulls 102-93 in their playoff opener on Sunday night.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Frankfort’s Young breaks school record

    HAGERSTOWN — Frankfort’s Lucas Young broke a school record in the 800-meter dash and had three top threefinishes in leading a strong performance by the Falcons track and field team Saturday at the Zonis Invitational at North Hagerstown High School.

    April 21, 2014

  • Frostburg men win, earn home tournament game

    Women COLLEGE
    St. Mary’s 16, Frostburg 7
    FROSTBURG — Spenser Love scored five goals, with three coming in the second half, and Devin Colegrove had a goal and two assists to lead Frostburg State to a 17-10 win over St. Mary’s in college men’s lacrosse Saturday.

    April 21, 2014

  • Lowery wins two events, sets FSU hammer mark

    GETTYSBURG, Pa. — J.R. Lowery won two events and set a school record while Devin Francillon won an event and had three top-three finishes to help Frostburg State to a second- place finish at the Mason-Dixon Invitational Saturday at Gettysburg College.

    April 21, 2014

  • Allegany College of Maryland's David Ormsby Allegany sweeps Harford

    CUMBERLAND — Reynaldo Adames had three hits and two RBIs in the first game, and Wyatt Belinda belted a grand slam in the second, leading Allegany to a doubleheader sweep of Harford, both by 7-5 scores, in college baseball Saturday at The Rock.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • So. Md. takes 2 from Allegany

    LaPLATA — College of Southern Maryland took a doubleheader sweep of Allegany College of Maryland, 4-3, 6-4, in Maryland JUCO softball action Saturday at Southern Maryland.

    April 20, 2014

  • Carr has 10 RBIs as Northern splits pair

    HANCOCK — Brooks Carr hit two home runs and drove in 10 runs on the day as Northern split a pair of games at the Hancock Easter Classic, beating Broadfording Academy 26-1 before losing to St. James 10-6. Against Broadfording, Carr hit a three-run homer in a 10run first inning, and also had a two-run double, an RBI single and a sacrifice fly to finish with seven RBIs. He also teamed with Brett Oates on a four-inning no-hitter. Carr struck out seven over the first three innings and Oates fanned two in the fourth.

    April 20, 2014

  • MR beats Southern for 58th

    OAKLAND — Mountain Ridge hit three home runs on the day and used a five-run second to pull away from Southern, 9-2, in an Appalachian Mountain Athletic Conference action Saturday morning at Southern to extend its winning streak to 58 games.

    April 20, 2014

  • Sports Roundup - 04/20/14

    April 20, 2014

  • SPTS-GLF-RBCHeritage.jpg Donald shoots 66, takes lead at RBC Heritage

    Luke Donald had an eagle and six birdies to shoot 66 on Saturday and take a two-stroke lead over John Huh after three rounds at Harbour Town Golf Links.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo