The first thing on Jim Harbaugh’s to do list is to fill out his coaching staff. With under experienced offensive coordinator Mike Johnson mostly likely not staying on the 49ers staff and defensive coordinator Greg Manusky interviewing with the Cowboys, Cardinals and Chargers, Harbaugh has candidates to interview to fill out his staff. Among those most mentioned who might join Harbaugh in San Francisco, current Stanford coach’s look to be high on the list.
Vic Fangio who is the current defensive coordinator for Stanford has been interviewed by Harbaugh. Fangio would be a great choice to be the 49ers next defensive coordinator because he has worked with Harbaugh and has 11 years of experience in the NFL as a defensive coordinator with the Carolina Panthers, Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans. Fangio spent his final years in the NFL with the Ravens as Special Assistant to Head Coach/Linebackers coach. Check out Stanford’s web bio of Fangio to see his detailed 24 years of experience in the NFL which is impressive.
Another important coach on Harbaugh’s Stanford staff was Greg Roman who is leading the list to become the 49ers next offensive coordinator. Roman has never been an offensive coordinator at the college or professional level. Roman however does have 13 years of NFL coaching experience with the Carolina Panthers, Houston Texans and Baltimore Ravens. In his 13 years in the NFL Roman served as Defensive Quality Control/Strength & Conditioning Assistant, Defensive Assistant, Offensive Quality Control, Offensive Assistant, Assistant Offensive Line and Tight Ends/Quarterbacks coach. While Roman has an extensive list of experience in the NFL it would be nice to have an offensive coordinator hired with previous experience at either the college or pro level.
This is not to say that Roman won’t make a great offensive coordinator for the 49ers. With Roman’s knowledge of the West Coast Offense and his two successful years at Stanford as the Tight Ends/Offensive Tackles/Running Game Coordinator in 2009 (Toby Gerhart) and as Associate Head Coach/Assistant Head Coach Offense/Tight Ends/Offensive Tackles in 2010 (Andrew Luck and the Cardinal number offense ranked #10 in the nation) the 49ers would be in good hands. Even if Roman is not hired as offensive coordinator he would still make a great addition to Harbaugh’s staff. With experience as a tight ends coach at both levels Vernon Davis and Delaine Walker would become more of a treat than they currently are under Roman’s tutelage. With experience as an offensive line coach also at both levels, second-year players Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati could improve to Pro Bowl lineman as Stanford’s offensive line in 2009 was one of the best in the country and only allowed seven sacks the whole season which ranked second fewest in the nation. That year also saw Toby Gerhart rush for 1,871 yards and score 28 rushing touchdowns.
There are others on the list but I would suspect that Harbaugh will go with people he knows and has worked with before. Both Fangio and Roman would be great coordinators for the 49ers.