Former 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said enough on Friday to paint a clear picture of how his tenure as 49ers coach came to an end.
But he was more evasive in answering questions about two individuals who remain with the 49ers during his interview on the “The TK Show” podcast, hosted by Tim Kawakami of the Mercury News.
Was 49ers CEO Jed York the leak to the national media that before the first game of the season began to accurately project the end of the Harbaugh era? And did defensive line coach Jim Tomsula campaign behind the scenes for Harbaugh’s job while Harbaugh still had the job?
Harbaugh said he has a “good idea” who was responsible for some of the unflattering reports about him. Then, he concluded, “Those are good questions for him (York) and the 49ers hierarchy, and we’ll leave it at that.”
At the press conference to address Harbaugh’s exit from the 49ers, York denied he was the source of the leaks. A day later on KNBR, York was even more adamant, saying the leaks compromised his stated goal of "winning with class."
“I do, and we talk about leaks all the time,” York said. “It's just not something we tolerate. You can go through people's emails and text messages. That's not something I'm going to do. I don't know where the leaks are coming from. I don't talk to Jay Glazer. I don’t talk to Deion Sanders. I don't know where those leaks are coming from.
“Listen, I didn't leak anything to those people. Period.”
Harbaugh listed “loyal coaches” among the aspects of his time with the 49ers he will never forget. It seemed questionable whether Harbaugh includes Tomsula among that group – a sentiment echoed in private comments three former 49ers assistant coaches made when contacted by CSNBayArea.com.
When asked whether he felt Tomsula was setting himself up to be the 49ers’ next coach, Harbaugh said, “That’s a good question for him. Better than to me.”
In the immediate aftermath of his appointment to the head-coaching position, Tomsula was asked to comment on that subject in an interview with Comcast SportsNet’s Jim Kozimor on "Yahoo!SportsTalk Live." Tomsula said his relationship with Harbaugh was "great," and dismissed any notion that he was actively seeking the job.
“That absolutely ludicrous,” Tomsula said. “That’s way out of line. That’s coming out of . . . that’s just stuff that doesn’t deserve a response.”