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The biggest loser? Stephen Ross

Joe Robbie had issues and some of them came out of bottles of alcohol. Wayne Huizenga was duped by Jimmy Johnson, Dave Wannstedt, Rick Spielman, Nick Saban and then duped Bill Parcells.

Stephen Ross?

He's the worst of all.

In the past week, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has turned the bitter disappointment of a 7-9 season into the good ol' days. He has lacked wisdom. He has misled and deceived. He has overestimated. And those were his resoundingly good moments.

Mostly he has embarassed the Miami Dolphins, his coach, his fans, and himself.

In a nutshell, he has stunk like a skunk.

Ross arrived back in South Florida early Friday morning and landed his private jet at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. He had spent the previous 30 or so hours trying repeatedly trying to convince Jim Harbaugh to become Miami's new head coach. By all reliable reports, he failed.

Ross couldn't sway Harbaugh in northern California.

Ross couldn't sway Harbaugh's agent David Dunn in southern California.

Ross took a giant swing and whiffed. He also whiffed on Jon Gruden. He also whiffed on Bill Cowher before that.

So Ross returned to South Florida a defeated person. But he mostly returned to South Florida a reviled person.

Reviled, you might ask? Yup.


Remember I have reported to you Ross met with Bill Parcells on Saturday to ask his opinion of what to do with Jeff Ireland and Tony Sparano. He left that meeting after indicating to Parcells that he was keeping both the general manager and coach. And then he went about the business of trying to replace the coach.

So Ross has crossed Bill Parcells.

It obviously can be argued Ross changed his mind after that Saturday meeting and reactied to Sunday's 38-7 defeat at New England. That one, after all, could have caused the owner to reconsider what he had told Parcells.


You see, Ross met with Sparano for several hours on Monday. And when he left that meeting, he gave Sparano the strong feeling that he would be retained. And then Ross went about the business of wooing several coaches, particularly Harbaugh.

That's his prerogative, right? He's just doing his due diligence, right?

Well, sure. But why mislead and misdirect? Why give an indication that points north and then go south? Why sully the honor of your word with men who value honor and the bond of one's word, men like Parcells and Sparano?

Ross could have easily left his meeting with Sparano by saying, "Coach, I understand you had issues this year and I understand everything you've just explained, but it's my duty as owner to go look around for the best coach I possibly can. So I'm going to take the next couple of days to do exactly that. I hope you understand and can be patient while that process plays out. If you can't be, I understand that, too."

Sparano would have had no choice but to accept that. And he would have respected the way Ross was handling it. But Ross never uttered words even remotely close to that. He just smiled and glad-handed Sparano and upon leaving his company, went about the business of trying to replace him.

However you feel about that -- even if misdirection doesn't bother you -- the process Ross then undertook was, well, kooky.

He approached Cowher and reportedly offered mega-bucks to get the Super Bowl winning coach. But he wanted to saddle Cowher with an unaccomplished general manager and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan.

Is anyone surprised Cowher turned Ross down? Please speak now if you are suprised. (You are alone if you raised your hand. Go face the wall.)

Ross also reportedly contacted Gruden or his "people" to gauge his interest. Gruden's interest is said to have been located at around the $10 million range. Outrageous, right? Even for a great offensive mind and former Super Bowl winning coach, that price tag is exorbitant.

But Ross is a billionaire three times over. He just offered around $7 millionish to Cowher. What's another $3? That's a total of $12 million over four years. That was too much for a multi-billionaire? That's like shopping for a Rolls Royce but walking away for not wanting to pay extra for the air conditioning.

Then came the Harbaugh debacle. This one makes 38-7 seem palatable.

Ross made a run at him here in South Florida and got rejected. And then Ross flew across country to San Jose, California to make a run at Harbaugh at his home turf. And despite offering more money than anyone else, Ross still couldn't close the deal.

A warning: When or if Ross finally speaks on this topic -- he refused to do that Friday morning when his plane landed -- he will likely say he never really offered Harbaugh a deal. He will probably paint this fiasco of a trip as an exploratory mission to feel out Harbaugh. It was, he may say, an interview of Harbaugh.

In truth, it was a Harbaugh interview of Ross. And Ross failed the interview if nothing changes in the next couple of days and Harbaugh does not run back to the Dolphins to become their coach.

So now Ross goes back to Sparano. I would tell you that was his fall-back plan the whole time. Not true because that would require you to believe Ross had any plan to begin with. I will not insult you with that.

Ross told Sparano upon leaving that meeting that he would get back with him on Tuesday and it would all be resolved by then. Tuesday came and went. Wednesday came and went. Thursday came and went. And the two had not talked.

Sparano was reading accounts of what was happening in the media. Of course, Ross may tell Sparano those accounts were wrong and he never talked to three different potential replacements. The owner may tell Sparano he has his confidence and it's always been that way.

Sparano is smart enough to know better.

And here's the kicker:

When Ross went on his cross-country coach search, even as he hung Sparano out to dry by offering a job that was still filled, the owner was something of a hero to one segment of the fan base. Fans that wanted Sparano out appreciated what Ross was doing regardless of the slimey manner in which he was doing it.

It angered fans that saw it as a classless, low-life, back-stabbing move. But it made fans of change enthusiastic about Ross.

But having failed to successfully make change, Ross has now alienated fans that didn't appreciate the manner he was going about trying to make this coaching change ... and he has now alienated fans that wanted the change he seemed to be working on but failed to accomplish .. and he has now aliented fans that didn't want any change to begin with even though there is no change being made.

He's solidified the entire Dolphins fan base! Everyone hates Ross for one reason or another.

He either embarrassed you or he embarrassed you.

Maybe Ross should offer to sell the team back to Huizenga. Or even Robbie. Either would be better than him. And, yes, I know Robbie is dead. He still had a better week than Ross.


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Hey ALoco...What's going on these days with the hyena? Is he in the caribbean drinking some vodka with Oprah? LOL!!

tony is a big boy, he will pull himself up by his britches and get back to work. i've been pulled in by management in the past, sometimes over nonsense. did i let it effect the way i did my job. no. i went right back to work. only thing is i now knew what managment expected so i performed at a higher level. if tony got the message then he will do the same. i'm not sticking up for him because i have said in previous posts that he should go but if he is staying his first order of business should be to start working hard to turn things around by looking for a staff that can help him and this team reach their goals. as the old saying goes, "the proof is in the pudding." we will see in April and beyond how serious this team is about making it to the playoffs on a consistent basis and give the fans what they deserve. whether you agree with what ross has done or not he owns the team. he paid one billion dollars for it. its a lot of money. seats were empty in the stadium; a lot of seats. i think that gives him some say in who will be his head coach. he was being very aggressive about the search and i applaud that because i think he wants a winner. that is putting your team and the fans first. robbie never cared about the fans. he was a skinflint who wouldn't spend a nickel to get a player who could help the team. we now have an owner who is willing to spend the money and we have fans complaining. get a life already.

Any reason why we don't give Mike Nolan a chance? Or wait and see what happens with Fisher? Lots of unanswered questions...

Apparently Stanford is now offering Harbaugh more money than the 49ers...

Gor those of you who don't seem to quite understand what has transpired...letss put it this way....

Lets say the BEST...HANDS DOWN BEST...ILB wanted to come to our team.....but WE have CHANNING CROWDER as our other ILB....DO we CUT Clammy because THE BEST ILB is is intrested and does a drive by of our team.....


Clammy sucks....but we all know he is the best available for us.....we don't cut Clammy until a proven ILB is signed.....

does that make more sense....does that put it in better context?

I don't care what anybodu says...LINDA COHEN IS SMOKING

I think this article pretty much hits the nail on the head


How do the Dolphins move forward from here????





How much money is Mr. Ross paying you under the table to protect his interests and support his decisions? It looks to me that you are getting more pay from Mr. Ross than what the Herald is paying you.

Sparano isn't the problem. Team was close to become a playoff team, he is only missing some key parts on offense.

The problem is the OL, OC, QB, QB coach. I also say draft rookie to compete with Henne. I don't think a free-agent QB would work.

Overall the team has been improving with him at helm.




The owner, GM, & coach are laughing stocks of the NFL. We can look at the bright side, with Sparano still on board, we have a LEGIT change to get Luck next year! lol

Ross blew it & looks ridiculous in the process. We look clueless as an organization. Gruden turned em down, Cower wanted it but said no because of Jeff Ireland of all people.

Now we are stuck with a completely lame duck Sparano & Ireland. Our coach knows he wasn't their choice. He'll be out by mid-season & we will essentially waste another year down this road when we could have started down a new path.

Harbaugh stays because MONEY, LUCK, and his brother never won in a ncs championship so he will next year. That's the only way he can prove he's better remember it's all about competition with these brothers.

Everyone is really over thinking this. Doesn't this situation happen all the time to the players? Looking for a better player at a position then settle for the same guy they had because of no real improvements available. What do they do? They come back and say it is the business side of the game. No different here either! Ross didn't land Harbaugh but get to keep a coach who now realizes this is his last shot. Sparano may now have learned to forget about loyalty to those who DO NOT PRODUCE. Whether that be players or coaches! Maybe now Sparano will become a real HC and control the ones under him instead of them running it their way(Henning and the offense). It's show time Sparano! You mess up this year and you are DONE!

Tony Sparano

With the Help of the following cast

Dan Henning
Ted Ginn
Channing Crowder
Chad Henne
The fired Special teams guy

and a host of many others

Because of or in spite of

Tony Sparano has a winning record in the NFL

Soiled :)

Let's also talk about how your reporting is deplorable.

kris..2 words for you. Erin Andrews.

The biggest question is who will be the next OC

Aloco....Yesterday you spoke about saving a BLOG and printing it to shove in all our faces if Harbaugh didn't WIN here....

On that same blog...YOU posted a bunch of stuff saying HE WILL BE NAMED HEAD COACH TODAY.....

Whats up with that?

You guaranteed it.....

what do you say now?

This team is a joke

Armando the definition of insanity to keep trying the same thing and expect a different result. Until the Dolphins can figure out how to beat the Patriots we will be a middle of the pack team. 2010 was an embarrassment we lost 4 games Cleveland, Pittsburgh,Buffalo, Detroit that we should have won period. It falls on Sparano and I don't blame Ross at all for looking to upgrade this coaching staff. The total lack of preparation on Special teams cost us the Jets game and contributed to the first New England loss. All things we know so I ask why do you think Sparano and his staff deserve another chance? This team should have won 10-11 games and we layed an EGG and that my friend falls on the Coaches. Belichick prepares his teams better than anyone for ALL IN GAME SITUATIONS...and exposes the other teams weakness....Until we are prepared to cover the tight end, cover kicks, and pressure Brady into mistakes we will not beat the Patriots and that my friend is coaching. My take is with Sparano back it will be the same sequel as last year, same ingredients same result.....

Totally pathetic...we continue to be the laughing stock of the NFL. Maybe we should send Ross to be mentored by Robert Kraft. As much as I hate the Patriots we can all agree Kraft has done it right. On another note, as much as I wanted Sparano out I now feel sorry for the man. So lame duck, he does not have the support of the owner, the players are turning on him, and he has no OC. For some reason why does Ross think that Sparano can turn things around now after trying to bag Harbaugh? Why Harbaugh? We all know what a debacle we went through when the last college coach was hired here and he was the "Hot Coach" at the time. Complete waste then, complete waste now. Get used to it DolFans we are now headed down the same road as Detroit, the complete laughing stock of the NFL. Another losing season in 2011...Pathetic...

gruden makes 10 mill at his current job espn on numberous ocassions has reported this is his asking price.

Ross told all of them Henne is the QB no matter what.
Ross said Henne would be the greatest Dolphin QB of all time, he has to give that at least 5 years just to get off the ground.

If we go 8-8 next year, Ross sees that as improvement & these guys aren't gone....I'm done with the Dolphins.

Craig may actually get his wish than I become a fan of another team.

#1....agree....but all I got right now is Linda...hot women and sports...finally somebody got it right...

Armando...change your picture with a HOT CHICK and call yourself Amanda...bet you will get more fans

OMG!!!....we have to listen to this drama now? Does it ever actually become about the football that's played in this town? Honestly, it's just one big soap opera with the fans and media of this team. No wonder we're no better than mediocre....we continue to have the focus in the worng places. I thought this was about business and we were all big boys and girls?

Listen, Ross owes it to the fanbase to investigate all opportunities to make this organization better. He did that. Ireland works for the Dolphins and it's his job to do what the owner says. He did that. Let's not stir anything else up. If Sparano doesn't like the deal he's got he can walk away from his $3 million deal at any time. Here's a better idea....improve on last year's contract, do what you're supposed to be doing and we won't be having these conversations and he'll end up getting an exension. Jeff Fisher is a much more tenured coach in this league and to this point Tennessee has not committed to him. Do you think he's crying about it? Get over it and let's start focussing on making this team better.

I'm out guys.....cheers!

More field goals. More ridiculous rational for not playing potential pro bowl players (see Cam Wake 2009), more stiff offense, more talk about 'minus plays,' more talk about 'chunk yards,' more micromanaging, more reshuffling offensive line because he thinks he can coach any group of linemen to perfection.

Ross, you're a bigger douche than Armando.




I wonder if there is any room on the Packers bandwagon for new fans?

Perfect post Armando, hit a home run!! Ross embarrassed everyone. If I was Coach Sparano I would as for an immediate extension of my contract. If he didn't give it, I would leave the team after the 4th PreSeason game with "Health" issues. Luckily for Ross Sparano has integrity and class, unlike him and his Sideshow Clown Peterson.

Craig M...great POST.....

Craig M comes to declare himself above the complaining by fans, while issuing his own complaints ... then leaves.

Don't let the door smack you in the taint on the way out.

I think the reason we dont have a new coache is Ross brought the moron Ireland with him.

Little J probably asked the prospective coaches unappropriate D_BAG questions.

LOL @ kris 9;11

Ah, you beat me to it, Pennington should be the next OC. Can't fault Ross for trying to improve the team. Spar-a-no needs to man up. And he will.

dolfdan, beg to differ, but Sparano is a BIG problem. You heard from the players about his coaching style (even LOMBARDI had to adjust his style to one that actually, you know, improved a team's chance of winning since dissension doesn't ever lead to good results). But then there's the poor game management still, the poor game planning, not moving quick enough to fix glaring problems with the team and coaching staff, outdated philosophy for winning in the NFL, etc. etc.

So, Sparano doesn't come out of this looking good at all. He looks like a position coach who has no business running a team who's a dead man walking. Any misstep between today and a year from now just is another nail in his coffin.

If you think Sparano is somehow removed from the putrid stench of mediocrity this team has been last couple of years, you're lying to yourself. Just like people say this team was a couple of plays from having a winning record, I'll say they're a couple of plays from being Cleveland or Detroit too.

True Aloco...you did say that a few weeks ago....I just woudn't count anything out until we here something from the people who count...


Good one Craig M.

Fist pump fist pump yesssss!

So the plan is go 2-14 nxt yr and get Luck and Harbaugh?

That would work for me. But this organization is a joke now.

Well at least I won't have to watch the painfully inept offense next year cause it's going to be blackout city baby!

I don't think the CBS affiliate will have enough cash to buy up the 30,000 empty seats every home game lol.

Ross hasn't alienated me. He tried to upgrade and failed. We all fail from time to time. The only thing I blame him for, if the story is true, is telling Sparano on Monday that he'd get back to him on Tuesday and not doing so. If it was Ross directly who kept leaking all this about the Harbaugh fiasco then I blame him for that too. However, there has been no indictation that's the case.

The question now is where do we go from here?


The Dolphins are the most dysfunctional team in the league

Right on DC.

First of all Chad Henne is smarter than anyone else in here.

well, now that tony is staying he must replace henning. the one name that comes to mind is gus malzhan. any other candidates?

Actually it is hard to feel sorry for Sparano, he also fired players once he thought them useless, even if they were starters a week ago (Jason Allen e.g.)
However to think you can treat the head of a team like that and think that his players will follow him is ridiculous. If Sparano loses his first 2-3 games, everybody will call for his head.
Ross got in bed with Peterson and they gave birth to a lame duck

Based on the link I just posted, Sparano doesn't even know he is still the coach. So, lets not give credit where it isn't due yet.

In Madden, Ricky Williams is my headcoach

so far you have alienated the players (calling them cowards for not derailing the coaches mid season) and owner for looking around before deciding his best option was the status quo.

Aside from me not agreeing with either assessment, you have COMPLETELY lost any access to either. Of course Tony will love you for standing by your man, but frankly he's a loser. He is to coaching what you are to sports journalism!

And let me just say:

The drama & soap opera theatrics that we, as fans, indulge in, has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH WHY MIAMI IS MEDIOCRE.

That blame goes to Jeff Ireland, Tony Sparano & Bill Parcells.

Holy lol at armandomustgo! One of the greets posts ever. Wow

I am old enough to remember the day Joe Robbie hired Don Shula. That was a proud day for this franchise. What happened this week brings shame on our historic past. I actually have sympathy for Tony Sparano now. He should ask for a big raise. How anyone could work for Ross is beyond me.

Blah, Blah...Don't see what the big deal is. So, we have our contingency plan in place. At least Henning is gone.

Not sure how this is any different than telling the media, and everyone else Clemmons is the starter, bringing in Ryan Clark to get shot down and then have to start Clemmons anyway. Big Whoop.


Please no Cam Newton. He has terrible mechanics, runs a spread offense which is nothing like a pro offense, doesn't read defenses.

If I'm an owner with a mult-million dollar franchise I have the right to "turn over" my coaching roster in the same way a coach "turns over" his playing roster. How is this any different than promises Tony might make to a player, only to see said player cut or benched?

Awkward process, yes. But as a fan I definitely don't feel alienated...at least Ross has made it clear he's willing to consider change in the face of mediocrity.

BREAKING NEWS: Mike Vick wants to sign with Miami

We did not have continuity on the O-Line this season and our offense suffered.
That's it.

Time to move on.

Mando's a mouthpiece for Parsmells. That's the way Parcell's operates, he doesn't allow anyone else to talk, he rarely talks but then his thoughts get printed as if the last word. Parcell's did it in NY, in New England and now here. He says nothing then does his damage through mouthpieces like Mando who are desperate just to have Parcell's talk to them. Parcell's is spineless but luckily for him he has enablers like Mando to do his dirty work.

Barry, the product on the field the last 20 years has brought MUCH MORE shame to the franchise than anything that happened in the last week. Ross wasn't the guy who led the team to a 7-9 record 2 years running. He was the guy who said that wasn't acceptable.

Marc, hopefully someone of Nolan's stature than can take the offense (including oline) away from Sparano and just let him control when in the 1st quarter to blow all 3 timeouts.

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