THE late, great American football legend "Bum" Phillips summed it up perfectly when he once observed: "There's two kinds of coaches, them that's fired and them that's gonna be fired."
For every Wayne Bennett and Craig Bellamy who enjoy long, lucrative, highly successful careers, there are myriad others who are cast aside with scarcely a second thought.
Last weekend Garth Brennan became one of them, and for anyone who knows this born-and-bred Novocastrian, it was a sad day.
Brennan overcame incredible odds and made long-term sacrifices to become an NRL head coach, and for the Gold Coast Titans to discard him barely halfway into a three-season deal says more about that club's administration and players than it does about the man in the hot seat.
Certainly results left Brennan vulnerable.
In his first season, the Titans won eight games and finished 14th on the ladder - one win and one rung higher than they had managed 12 months earlier, under Neil Henry.
Last week, after their 24-2 loss to Penrith, they dropped to last place with four wins from their first 16 games.
Their decision to sack Brennan less than 48 hours later was as predictable as it was weak.
Ever since Gold Coast's head of performance and culture, Mal Meninga, was commissioned recently to conduct a review into the club's performance, Brennan has appeared a dead man walking. The word "scapegoat" springs to mind.
Gold Coast chairman Dennis Watt, however, insisted Meninga's review did not recommend that Brennan be sacked, which raises the question of why bother with a review?
Whether the Titans can find a replacement capable of masterminding the success they crave remains to be seen.
But one thing that failed sporting franchises traditionally have in common, whatever the code, is a regular turnover in coaches.
In contrast to Brennan's brief stint, consider the faith the Knights have invested in Nathan Brown.
Brennan finished with 12 wins from his 40 games in charge. At the corresponding point of his tenure, Brown had three wins and a draw to his name, and was well on his way to collecting a second wooden spoon.
From the ensuring 48 games, however, Brown has delivered 20 wins and has built a team who seem more than capable of featuring in this season's play-offs.
The difference between the Knights and Titans would appear a long-term plan, and patience.
Brown took over at the end of 2015, after Rick Stone had been sacked and Newcastle finished in the competition cellar.
He moved on players he felt were overpaid and underperforming, and blooded a host of rookies before they were ready. He could only have done so with the blessing of an administration who were willing to endure a couple of years of punishment and pain.
Along the way, Brown had his share of good fortune. Newcastle chased the likes of Greg and Jack Bird, Kieran Foran, Matt Scott, James Graham and Ben Matulino, but none of them chose to sign. That left the Knights with enough salary-cap space to recruit Kalyn Ponga, Mitchell Pearce, David Klemmer, Kurt Mann, Tim Glasby, Edrick Lee, Connor Watson and Hymel Hunt, all of whom have justified their salaries.
Compare that to Brennan's situation at the Gold Coast, where he was under pressure from day one to produce results.
Some of the big earners signed on his watch - Ashleigh Taylor, Bryce Cartwright, Tyrone Peachey and Shannon Boyd - haven't lived up to their price tags.
To blame the coach is to ignore Gold Coast's history and reputation as a transit lounge where players go to top up their superannuation.
Whoever inherits Brennan's job will face the same perennial dilemma that has plagued the club since 1988, when Gold Coast were known as the Giants and signed an array of big-name has-beens.
Even if Garth never receives another opportunity as an NRL head coach, a prospect that would realistically appear likely, he can be proud of what he has achieved.
Brenno was a handy player in the Newcastle district competition, who won grand finals with Wests and Waratah-Mayfield, but not quite good enough to crack first grade with the Knights.
He walked away from a successful career as a police prosecutor after being offered the job as the Knights' under-20s coach, steering them into the play-offs, only to be shown the door when Wayne Bennett arrived at the club.
Penrith supremo Phil Gould then threw him a lifeline, but rather than relocate his family from their home at Stockton, Brennan spent the next six years commuting to the foot of the Blue Mountains.
He steered the Panthers to under-20 and NSW Cup premierships to eventually land his dream job at the Titans.
Now, barely, two years later, he joins the long line of former coaches wondering when, or indeed if, they will receive another opportunity.
Some never do, and if that is the case is the case for 47-year-old Brennan, it would seem a shame.
At least in years to come, he will be able to say he made it to the highest level and gave it his best shot. What more can a bloke ask of himself?