Brian December 18th, 2014 at 1:02 PM



wow never thought I'd be quoting Paula Cole on this blog
okay that's a lie
at least I can admit it, unlike NFL reporters

PRETTY MUCH. Clint Brewster talked to two guys($), one of whom said it's a "total ploy," no chance, lol GTFO. The other said it was a done deal. This coaching search in a nutshell.

ON THE LEAK. I've seen a lot of commenters and some respected media folk speculate about whether the numbers and existence of a hard offer becoming known to the public is good or bad for Michigan. I don't know; I do know that assertions that the agent is flogging it publicly in order to set Harbaugh's market price are not the whole story even if they are accurate.

The approximate number was out there in the Michigan paysite sphere for a week or two, and the first example of it breaking into the wild was a local news guy in Arizona who again got it from the Michigan side of things.

At that point Michigan makes a bonafide offer to Harbaugh. By bonafide I mean it is a you-can-sign-this-now contract Michigan had drawn up Sunday and Monday—I am certain of that information. NFL reporters start banging on his agent to find out what's going on, asking if the Joe Pequeno tweet had the right numbers. Agent says yes, things go to plaid. The "leak" was out there for any NFL reporter to see well before this happened, but if they don't hear it from an agent it can't be true.

Michigan didn't put it out there on purpose, but it was out there already. It is too hard to keep that under wraps when you need to gather the donors to make the big-ass offer happen and ping the regents to make sure your big-ass offer is okay by them. People talk.

Then once it's out there, it's a lot harder to flat-out lie to a guy you have to have a working relationship with when he has a specific number instead of a vague idea. I'm not bothered by the numbers getting out. Once they were on paper it was bound to happen.

ALSO. Emailer notes that this is a very mergers and acquisitions move from Hackett, a "bear hug" offer that is difficult to escape from. As a bonus it uses the window in which only Michigan can act with authority. NFL teams can whisper into his agent's ear about giving him the world; Michigan has put its meat on the table, so to speak. Look at all of it.

ON MICHIGAN'S SUPPOSED CHEAPNESS. Adam Schefter continued to throw cold water on things today during an appearance on ESPN radio, to the point of implying he did not believe the offer is even real. He does not aid his credibility when he says things like this:

The assertion that Michigan is cheap like that is either outdated or just wrong. They're building everything for everybody, and the opulent basketball PDC renovation gives you a good look into what revenue athletes (and the non-revenue ones, actually) are furnished with:

The new practice court area also features four overhead cameras that allow coaches to record practice. In addition, coaches are equipped with a hand-held remote to track various in-practice moments on film, and monitors inside the facility allow for instant teaching moments during practice.

After practice, players are offered a chance to unwind inside the player's lounge, a recreation area featuring lounge chairs, video game systems and an 84-inch television screen that also has the ability to be split into four separate 42-inch monitors.

The lounge is adjacent to the Michigan locker room, a circular high-technology facility featuring individual iPads for each player. Players have the ability to watch game film and go over other team material from their individual iPads, and coaches have the opportunity to cue up film from a large flat screen monitor inside the locker room itself.

This article just keeps going in this vein. Bathroom-conscious Jim Harbaugh will surely be pleased to note this:

Michigan men's coach John Beilein has the largest office in the wing, complete with a personal restroom and shower facility.

It's kind of gross what all the money goes to but Michigan's spending it just as furiously as everyone else.

I'm not quite sure what Schefter means by "support staff," but many of those positions, even the non-coaching ones, are limited in number by NCAA mandate and Michigan fills all the slots. They have four football analysts, an executive assistant to the head coach, an administrative assistant to the head coach for recruiting, four equipment guys, two video guys above and beyond the analysts, a dedicated counselor, etc etc etc. Recruiting budgets are weird—OSU was amongst the smallest spenders in that category in 2012 and 2013—but even so Michigan is on par with the rest of the league save Nebraska, which has no local recruiting base, and Illinois, which is just desperate.

Consider items about Michigan being cheap to be pulled from the buttock area. It is just about the only charge you can't level at Dave Brandon's AD. Brady Hoke averaged four million a year as Michigan's head coach. QED.

ON TIMELINES. I've heard a lot of different possibilities, with most asserting that this will happen only after the 49ers season is done. There is a wild rumor that a bunch of people have been told to clear their schedules this weekend that I can't confirm at all, and Steve Lorenz relates that Michigan's current commits have been told to expect something before Christmas($).

ON JUCO ADMISSIONS. Colin Cowherd apparently said something about how the offer includes the ability to admit JUCOs. This statement has no validity. Even if Michigan said they'd bend a little bit on that, that wouldn't be in writing or anything Cowherd is privy to. And the chances they did offer that to a guy who made Stanford into a power are minimal. For one, that promise is not one the athletic director can give.

I know I know, Austin Panter. Panter was an exception to the JUCO rule: he was a kid who qualified out of high school and still went to JUCO because he was at a school so small they played 8 man football. Michigan also had Russell Shaw back in the late 90s. It is not impossible; it is unlikely and will remain so.

Private jets, meanwhile… whatever. Michigan's got those coming out their ears.

ON TOPPING MICHIGAN'S OFFER. It can be done, of course. It'll be harder to do for the Raiders than other people, because California. Via Rivals user SevenToEightySix:

$8,000,000 in Michigan is going to end up being about $4.546mil after federal and state taxes.
$10,000,000 in California is going to be $4.89mil after federal and state taxes.

I don't think this is going to come down to money. If it does the Raiders will have to go to 12, at least.



That is not your best argument today.

STAY TUNED FOR GENERIC DENIAL. Standard weekly Harbaugh presser scheduled for 4:40 Eastern. Hopefully it'll be one sentence…


ETC: Eric Adelson on the offer. I've got your unseemly right here in my pants. I had to miss my WTKA spot this week with family things but I was on the Solid Verbal. About the 20 minute mark. Tim Kawakami could take some twitter pointers from Charles Robinson. I'll revisit this in more detail if we in fact get Harbaugh, but here's Nick Baumgardner talking to an old USD player of his.


Ron Utah

December 18th, 2014 at 6:42 PM ^

I'll say this: Hackett could not have done any better in pursuing Harbaugh than he has.  The offer is as generous as reasonability could possibly allow, the timing is perfect (49ers are out of the playoffs and the NFL can't yet contact JH), and it was kept relatively secret until the offer was made--at which poing either Harbaugh's agent or someone else was going to leak it anyway.

If we don't get Harbaugh, it won't be because we blew the process.  It will be because Harbaugh simply was never going to come.

Here's my bold prediction: Either Dan Mullen or an elite name (think Bob Stoops, John Harbaugh, Sean Payton, Jim Mora) will be the next coach at U-M if we don't get Harbaugh.  I guarantee you a back-up plan is in place, and that it's with a name that most of us would be satisfied with, if not downright pleased.  This will be done by 12/29, and we'll probably know with reasonable certainty by 12/25.

Merry Christmas.

Yost Ghost

December 18th, 2014 at 8:21 PM ^

I doubt they make a big cheese offer like this without some indication from the Harbaugh camp that there is interest. Now that the offer has been made there has been no official rejection of the offer and any implication that Jim is using the offer as leverage is ridiculous. There's no way Jim strings his Alma Mater along causing potential damage in the interest of his own selfish career pursuits. I think there is a strong possibility based on the facts that he does accept the offer.


December 18th, 2014 at 1:10 PM ^

Still wondering if the number of Searchbits (we're up to XX) will end up exceeding the number of Super Bowls that have been played (XLVIII, or 48).  If we don't get resolution until after the NFL season, it could happen.

One Armed Bandit

December 18th, 2014 at 1:11 PM ^

Take $8M/year to head to AA, not have to deal with big egos, run your program as you see fit with complete autonomy and have 100 kids hang on your every word every day...

Or take $10-12M/year to deal with the same stuff that's driving you toward getting out of the NFL and going to Michigan in the first place? Tough choice.

Go Blue in MN

December 18th, 2014 at 2:19 PM ^

If your assumption (that stuff is driving Harbaugh toward getting out of the NFL) is true, then your conclusion (coming to Michigan is the obvious choice) is also true.  But I don't think any of us know whether or not that assumption is correct.  The alternate narrative is that this is a hyper-competitive guy who is not going to leave the NFL unless and until he wins one or more Super Bowls.  Which is right?  Guess we'll find out in a couple weeks. 


December 18th, 2014 at 2:50 PM ^

Dude wtf.

So many idiot parents are destroying their kids brains.

Keep that up and by age 5 your kid is going to have ADD so bad he's not going to be capable of engaging a continuous task for more than 20 seconds without getting bored and tuning out.

People act like it's a human rights violation to deprive their kids of being in front of a screen for more than 15 minutes. Unbelievable.

Sent from MGoBlog HD for iPhone & iPad


December 18th, 2014 at 3:06 PM ^

Dude, this is a sports blog - not sure that anyone was asking for your opinion on parenting.  Especially one given in such a judgmental and obnoxious manner. 

Also, do you have young kids?  If you do, you may know that going on errends with little kids can be difficult and the iphone can be a nice way to keep them occupied. 



December 18th, 2014 at 3:19 PM ^

As a father of 2 kids, I am pretty sure his primary concern is keeping said child quiet and happy so as not to a) disrupt other shoppers and b) look like "that guy" with the bratty kid that everyone comments about.

Maybe you don't have kids, but a 1-2 year old child isn't the best at critical life skills such as sopatial awareness, voice immodulation etc.

So calm down and Harbaugh on.


December 18th, 2014 at 7:24 PM ^

Idiot parents?  I'll go ahead and assume that I am who you are referring to, so...

"He" is a girl.  So you didn't start off so well. 

Furthermore, I didn't ask for your advice, and now that I have received it, I'm sure that I'll never need it in the future. 

Lastly, I'm a District Manager for a big box retailer, and this time of year is obviously very busy for me.  I decided to take the day off today (which has been my only day off in about two weeks now) to spend the day with my daughter.  He went to a horrifically overpriced "gymnastics" class this morning, then spent an hour at the park watching an alligator on the bank of the lake that she insisted was a cat (one of three words she actually knows).  We had a wonderful day together, the kind of day I wish I could spend with her more often.  Your opinion reminded me that I need to take that time; because poor souls like yours obviously didn't have the best parenting, otherwise you wouldn't be callous or naive enough to makes such stupid comments.

Also, #Harbaugh.   


December 18th, 2014 at 1:15 PM ^

"Look man, you can listen to Jimi but you can't hear him. There's a difference man. Just because you're listening to him doesn't mean you're hearing him."