The Unnoticed Hug
August 27 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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It didnít receive much publicity, likely because it contradicted nearly every reporters theories, but it was written about a little last week. During a question and answer session at an annual event the 49ers hold, the Ďkickoff luncheoní, Terrell Owens and Steve Mariucci gave each other a big hug, when asked about their relationship.
The significance of the hug was much deeper than a superficial Ďlook everything is okí. The two, coach and star, are finally on the same page again, and happy to be working with one another. It only took two years to mend the fences, but alas both the receiver and coach are happy.
Of course itís been talked about all season that the relationship will never last. But my opinion differs quite dramatically. Before Owens did his thing on the Dallas Star, the two were good friends, rarely feuding and quite respectful of one another. There is no reason that they canít return to that same status.
Owens has already spoken to the media several times this off-season. Not once has he complained about not seeing enough balls, or that the offense was to conservative. Rather the receiver comments on how the team is improving and needs to improve. Itís certainly a breath of fresh air.
So while most reporters decided the hug was insignificant, and not really story worthy (or rather they still donít want to concede that the two have begun to rebuild their friendship), I believe itís important that we all take notice of a new and improved coach/receiver relationship.