I was relaxing this evening with a glass of single malt scotch and thinking about the University of Michigan Football Program. In specific, if the rumors regarding Jim Harbaugh being interested in the Head Coaching job at Notre Dame were true, would I, as a Michigan fan, be interested in trying to lure Jim back to Ann Arbor rather than South Bend?Jim Harbaugh is known to be a great recruiter within a University with at least as stringent academic standards as the Univeristy of Michigan. This is a plus. Rich Rod has had some recruits that have not made it past the clearing house due to academic ineligibilities. Despite this, Rich Rod has been able to recruit Will Campbell last year and arguably the best dual threat quarterback in the nation. Will is young and although a beast in High School, is still lacking in his skill set for Division I college football. Time will tell how good he actually is.
As for Devin, assuming the commitment stands, he may be Rich Rod's "Pat White" that makes him look like a genius. Again, only time will tell.
Jim Harbaugh has ruffled feathers with the University with his comments regarding athletics and academics. The real question is if he really believes what he says, or just says it to rile Michigan Regents and Administrators. Rich Rod isn't doing anything to purposefully rile anyone within the University. Lord knows he needs every supporter he can get.
Jim Harbaugh hates Pete Carroll, and my God, so do I. Right now, Rich Rod hates everyone with the exception of Delaware State University.
Jim Harbaugh is a Michigan Man. However, quite honestly, I don't think that really stands for much. Michigan was a upper level team within the big 10, a conference that believes it is far better than it really is. The Big 10 has had trouble winning on the national level and needs a paradigm shift in playing, coaching and recruiting if it is to be successful on a national level. Perhaps Harbaugh could bring this, but Rich Rod certainly can (with the right players).
I confess that I am a Rich Rod supporter and I firmly believe that he should be given a fair chance to fail or succeed within a time frame that is realistic. So, having said that, would I jump at the chance to hire Jim Harbaugh if the opportunity presented itself?
No. I would not. Doing so would not be fair to Rich Rod. It would send a negative message to every coach currently coaching at Michigan or even contemplating coaching at Michigan. It would affect our current players, our recruits and put the program into uncertainty for at least another 2 years.
I would rather allow Rich Rod next year to show if he can produce a championship caliber team or not. I don't expect that next year will be a Big 10 championship team, but it needs to be moving in that direction. If it is not, I will be the first one to hop off the Rich Rod bandwagon and ask for his head. I will take my chances in having Jim Harbaugh or Brian Kelly being available. Who knows, Harbaugh may just give us all the middle finger like he did the rest of the University.