Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports



Now that the divorce between Jim Harbaugh and the San Francisco 49ers seems inevitable, it's hard to tell which narrative fans accept more. The one that portrays Harbaugh as a two-time Super Bowl champion, who built the 49ers from the ground up. Or, the one absolving him of blame for Colin Kaepernick's regression, and this season's offensive malaise.

Regardless, the speculation surrounding Harbaugh is terrifying the faithful. They're afraid of the unknown once the chosen one leaves town. And that fear is causing many to make irrational assumptions based on false premises.

Let's look at three of the most common, terror-driven reasons offered by those who cannot stand the thought of a 49ers/Harbaugh split.

The first, and perhaps most absurd is the idea Harbaugh is the only good coach willing to work in Santa Clara. What fuels that opinion? Does it really follow logic to believe new facilities, a solid roster, and about $5-$6 million dollars per year is unattractive to coaches?

Next on the list of the unreasonable, is the notion general manager Trent Baalke is a poor talent evaluator. This is largely based on the fact the 49ers 2012 draft yielded little, plus, the team still lacks a top-level wide receiver. Fair enough, but if Baalke deserves criticism for failing miserably in 2012, shouldn't he receive some credit for the other drafts he administered?

The other ridiculous argument steeped in panic is the sense that Baalke is too inept to hire another good coach. Think about that for a moment. In Baalke's career as a NFL GM, he has hired one head coach. To project the likes of Dennis Erickson, Mike Nolan and Mike Singletary on him at this stage, borders on the asinine.

With all the scorn directed at Jed York and Baalke (some justified), one would think the 49ers overachieved the last three seasons. Except, if you're honest, you know that isn't the case. In fact, despite a Super Bowl appearance, and three straight NFC title games, one could argue the Niners underachieved. Yet, the perception is Harbaugh turned water into wine, then rescued the team from itself like a Messiah.

But that's what fear does. It freezes you from the inside out rendering you incapable of logical, coherent thought.

Maybe Baalke and Jed York combine to hire a venerable stooge, an unimaginative hack, unfit to tutor high school punters. Maybe Baalke's next three drafts are abject failures and the 49ers plummet to the NFL abyss for a decade. But there is no evidence to support either of those arguments.

Harbaugh leaving is nearly a fait accompli, but as you grieve his imminent departure, do so with the knowledge he does not own a monopoly on winning. In fact, Mike McCarthy, Mike Tomlin and his brother John, already know more about the subject.

Maybe Baalke's next coaching hire is as good as one of them.