DALLAS – If his NBA coaching career takes a dramatic turn for the worse, maybe Rick Carlisle can work as an agent for NFL coaches.
He could certainly be useful to Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett during the contract negotiations that are likely to occur after the season.
“Jason Garrett is one of the best coaches I’ve ever seen,” Carlisle said during his weekly show on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM. “He continues to impress me year in, year out, game in, game out. I’ll remind everybody again how they were positioning – not him, but other people in that organization – were positioning their season as, ‘Eh, you know, this may be a bit of a rebuilder.’ And this guy’s done the best coaching job I’ve ever seen.”
Carlisle, who is the current dean of Dallas pro sports coaches in his seventh season with the Dallas Mavericks, has always made a point to reach out to his colleagues with the Cowboys, Texas Rangers and Dallas Stars. He’s developed a particularly close bond with Garrett, visiting Valley Ranch and sitting in on coaches’ meetings several times over the years.
This isn’t the first time that Carlisle has offered strong public support for Garrett, who has been under fire a lot the last few seasons when the Cowboys finished with three straight 8-8 records. But it is the first time that the Cowboys, who are 9-4 after Thursday night’s win over the Chicago Bears, are guaranteed to finish with a winning record during Garrett’s head coaching tenure.
Carlisle wants to make sure that Garrett gets credit for the Cowboys’ success.
“He’s done a phenomenal job just all-around, you name it,” Carlisle said before the Mavs faced the Phoenix Suns. “That team was supposed to be rebuilding and everything else. Their defense was supposed to be the worst. It’s just a really tremendous job.”