Here’s wishing Ken Whisenhunt well.
And I don’t mean that in a false, fakey, good-luck-go-get-em kind of way. It’s a genuine desire to see him succeed in his second go-around as a head coach, and it’s for a couple of reasons.
First, he deserves another shot to prove his worth as a head coach in this league. There’s no doubt his time here had run its course, but his résumé was too impressive to think he hadn’t earned another opportunity to show he can do it.
But mostly I wish him well because I hope it will end, for the rest of eternity, this inane debate that Cardinals fans love to have.
The Super Bowl year, how much of it was Whiz and how much of it was Kurt Warner? Toward the end of his time here, the chorus of voices claiming he deserved no credit — that he was just here when the wheel went round — were loud and persistent.
I wanted to see a new coach like every other barstool expert. The lines between coach and personnel guy had become so blurred change was necessary.
But to suggest he had nothing, or very little, to do with a Super Bowl appearance was always, well, silly. The attempt to assign some kind of a ratio of credit (70:30 Warner, for example) was the hamster wheel of local sports for a solid year or so.
The truth is this organization has evolved mightily in the days since a mostly empty Sun Devil Stadium. Whisenhunt was a big part part of that evolution, as were Dennis Green’s draft picks and Warner. And Adrian Wilson, Anquan Boldin, Larry Fitzgerald and countless others. The construction of University of Phoenix Stadium was perhaps the premiere driving force behind that evolution.
Stubborn to a fault? Sometimes. Struggles to evaluate quarterbacks? Surely. But you don’t take a team to the Super Bowl and then follow it up with a 10-win season by being somebody’s caddie.
The man can coach, and I think he’ll remind Cardinals fans of that fact soon enough.