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Off-season 101
April 13 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
If the NFL off-season was a college course, 49ers general manager Terry Donahue would have a grade point average of 4.0. On the first day of the course, professors and students alike were unsure of how Donahue would adjust to being a freshman, and living in a dorm away from home. Luckily his father Bill Walsh groomed him well, and taught him the tools of the trade. Donahue seems to have mastered them.

Heading into the final exam on the weekend of the April 20th, Donahue has done incredible things throughout the course. With the help of his peers, Donahue has triumphantly returned 20 of 22 starters to the 49ers. And in recent days, Donahue has filled the two open wholes as well. First in signing Tony Parrish to play safety, and then on Friday signing offensive guard Ron Stone to take over for Ray Brown next season.

While there is still the possibility of change over at positions such as wide receiver, the only reason for such switches will be if the team recognizes a drafted player or free agent who would be an upgrade on the talent currently on the roster. This is a huge turn around from just a season ago where Donahue and co. were handing out positions to just about anyone who knows what a football is.

With the final cram session already upon Donahue and his staff, I have faith that he will maintain his GPA on the final. Leading up to it however, it looks like he will have one more test in restructuring the contract of JJ Stokes. Clearly Donahue was very well prepared for Off Season 101, it wont be long before peers start asking for his study notes.

Talk about it in the 49ers Paradise Forum

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