Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Tagliabue's Retirement Plan

On Monday, NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue announced that he will retire in July.  Tagliabue has had a highly regarded tenure since replacing Pete Rozelle in 1989.  No work stoppages have occurred on his watch, and the NFL’s popularity towers over other professional sports leagues.



The departing commissioner has an endless number of possibilities for what he can do next.  One can only imagine what suggestions that other public figures who have retired would have for him.  Here’s how a few individuals – past and present - might have advised Tagliabue on how to spend his retirement.



Keith Jackson:  Return in the fall, but only as the commissioner for west coast teams


Michael Jordan:  Try your luck at minor league baseball


Jim Brown:  Become a film action hero


Sugar Ray Leonard:  Un-retire a bunch of times before the retirement actually sticks


Richard Nixon:  Fly off in a helicopter and get pardoned by Gerald Ford


Johnny Carson:  Before you go, get Bette Midler to come by and sing to you


Roger Clemens:  Keep people in the dark about whether you’re really retiring or not


Bill Clinton:  Have your wife run for the Senate


John Wooden:  Watch as replacements regularly get hired, then fired for not measuring up to you


Grace Kelly:  Marry a European prince


Mark McGwire:  Refuse to talk about the past


Joe Namath:  Show up drunk on the sideline and hit on a reporter


Ted Koppel:  Have three people take your place


Secretariat:  Get put out to stud, siring potential future commissioners


Joe Paterno:  Retire?  What does that mean?



Tagliabue does not plan to immediately move into a retirement home.  However, when that day arrives, the facility will surely be equipped with luxury boxes.  And the bingo games will be played under a revenue-sharing agreement.