CBS Sports: UM v ND preview

Submitted by 5th and Long on July 31st, 2018 at 3:38 PM

Video preview of UM v. ND opening game.  

  • Pretty vanilla, but both pick Michigan despite ND being a 2.5 pt favorite.
  • Simmon's noted that at B1G media days Jim Harbaugh faced a ton of questions about the lack of beating ranked teams and rivals.
  • They think that if UM loses, it could mean JH could feel his seat get warmer.
  • Barton Simmons calls Michigan a "dark horse national title/CFP team."

Link below (sorry the embed code keeps giving a URL error)


So, if UM loses the opener to ND is Harbaugh on the hot seat?  



July 31st, 2018 at 3:47 PM ^

Harbaugh would probably have to miss a bowl game to be on the hot seat after this year. The bonehead national pundits who insist that he's already on the hot seat can figure out the likeliness of that happening.


We will beat ND by multiple scores.

Hold This L

July 31st, 2018 at 3:51 PM ^

I’m not a gottlieb (spelling?) fan but he had a fair take on harbaugh on his radio show. Basically saying what most Michigan fans say but it was nice to hear from a national media guy either no ties to the program. He also mentioned how donetonio benefitted immensely from penn state and Michigan being down and tressel getting fired. He credited bill o’brien for making franklins job much easier. Said how it was tough for harbaugh to come into a loaded division, change a culture completely, find a qb, and win. 


July 31st, 2018 at 3:57 PM ^

Can't argue with any of that. A lot of people (maybe just me sometimes?) forget that Franklin didn't take over right from the shit storm at Penn State - he had an NFL head coach take on some of the dirty work for him.


People also underestimate (simply because "it's Michigan") how difficult a job Jim had in front of him when he got here.


Obviously MD inherited MSU at the only possible time to make them a competitive program.

Hold This L

July 31st, 2018 at 4:01 PM ^

Agreed. Gottlieb(?) also says how Brady hoke is a good guy, but a bad football coach. Talked about how he never wore a headset. 

He didn’t mention this but I will, Franklin also inherited a 5 Star QB. Whether you agree with that rating or not, the raw talent was there. If harbaugh inherited a highly touted qb from day 1. We may be here talking about a couple 11 or 12 win season his first two years. No offense to rudock, who I love, but he was a backup from Iowa. 


July 31st, 2018 at 10:29 PM ^

I'm not sure Harbaugh could have fixed Mallet's issues, starting with hitting the sauce way too hard.

Tough to say ... part of what kept Jim at arm's length earlier in his post-playing days was pretty similar to the path Mallet was on while he was in Ann Arbor.  So could he have reached him?  Maybe.

Also true that Jim likes a thinking-man's QB, and I don't think he was going to wave a wand and put 20 IQ points into Mallet's gray matter that didn't exist.


5th and Long

July 31st, 2018 at 4:10 PM ^

The same question came up to me from an A&M fan who saw my UM golf head covers.  His first question was whether we were getting tired of Harbaugh and if he's on the hot seat after last year.

It baffles me.  I get he needs W's against the rivals, but Bo had a handful of 8-4 seasons - even a 6-6 season.  Lloyd had an 8-4 season prior to the National Championship team.   9/10 win seasons with a few 11+ win seasons sprinkled in has been kind of the norm for UM football dating back to Bo...


July 31st, 2018 at 4:33 PM ^

Bo bought himself a lifetime fan approval ticket with the '69 victory over OSU. He didn't need to use it very often, but it helped ameliorate some of the angst after the '84 season.

If we had managed to beat OSU in '16 or last year none of this hot seat stuff would be around today.


August 1st, 2018 at 4:32 PM ^

Saddest part is how far the Michigan standards have fallen when the goal is just making a bowl game.

We need to get back to winning a Big Ten Championship as the beginning of the Michigan standards. Year 3 for any coach's tenure should start paying dividends. Year 4 should be an established program with little to no questions (see PSU for an example). To suggest that Harbaugh, with as much as he is making, with as much power and influence he has, with how much resources the school has given him needs to just make a bowl game to avoid feeling a little heat is ridiculous.




July 31st, 2018 at 3:57 PM ^

Are they referring to some other advanced stat?

They have a whole article predicated on S&P+ projections, but according to that one ND would actually be favored by 5.5... (not endorsing the content of the below article - just linking for reference).


Durham Blue

July 31st, 2018 at 8:56 PM ^

Losing to MSU is out of the question this season.  I get that they are very experienced.  But we had a young team last year that played a full season.  So we are experienced now too.  And we have the talent advantage and what is shaping up to be another kickass D.  If we are relatively healthy going into the game and Shea is the QB we all hope he is going to be for Michigan then there are zero excuses for losing to MSU.

Hold This L

July 31st, 2018 at 3:58 PM ^

IF they lose, the media outlets won’t say “harbaugh on hot seat”, they’ll say “harbaugh looking at NFL”. That’s the default fall back. 



July 31st, 2018 at 4:01 PM ^

No way is he on the hot seat. ND has a pretty good team returning i don't think most UM fans give them enough credit. Its going to be a close game.


July 31st, 2018 at 4:02 PM ^

Yeah, I don't think losing this game by itself makes the seat warmer. I honestly believe that, for the time being, insofar as the AD is concerned, Harbaugh's leash has an end which we currently cannot see. Like someone said above, missing a bowl game might make it a smidge warmer, but really it would take a series of calamities like that to do it. Even then, we don't really know, and mine might be an awful guess. 

Monkey House

July 31st, 2018 at 4:07 PM ^

If they lose to nd, msu,osu and osu then yes he is on the "hot seat". Does that change anything,  not really.  But makes 2019 a true pressure cooker


July 31st, 2018 at 4:13 PM ^

ND brings back 10 starters on D including some solid beasts in the trenches so if you couple that with a new Michigan QB playing at ND for the first time and the damn South Bend juju, I could easily see us outplay, but lose to ND due to turn overs.  Still confident we can take them.  I give us a 61% chance to win.


July 31st, 2018 at 4:31 PM ^

They’re down to 8 or 9 returning starters on D, depending on how you count it, after the DE and CB transferred (and an ILB who graduated). Their D was also only 27th in S&P last year. Purdue was 28th, for comparison. Their DL is stout against the run, but not a good pass rushing unit. They’re 4-3 with an attitude of a 3-4 in that their DL mostly eats space and their LBs clean up and blitz for pressure.


Their CB Love is very good, but opposite him is Crawford, who is a crafty zone guy, but small and beatable in man. Their safeties are their biggest weakness on D, by far. If they play zone all night to not get Crawford or their S any bad matchups, Shea should have a field day. If they stack the box and play man, Crawford will get beat a few times by Black or DPJ, whichever poison they choose.


I think we run and use the TEs (this is a big “oh hello 6’8 NFL TE” game) over the middle a lot early, and Shea hits a bomb or two later, as they creep up to stop Higdon, to all but wrap it up.


July 31st, 2018 at 4:40 PM ^

[Referring to Big 10 Media Days]

"Jim Harbaugh was getting hammered with some questions, about, hey, you're not beating these big teams. You're 1-6 (incorrect) against your rivals. You're 0-3 against Ohio State. There's a lot of pressure building on Jim Harbaugh right now..."

I'm going to take the liberty to make my own edits to this quote, in bold.

"Jim Harbaugh was getting hammered by a couple of douche bags who had no business being credentialed for Big 10 Media Days, let alone allowed to ask questions at the event, with some ignorant questions that were a complete waste of everyone's time, about, hey, you're not beating these big teams. You're 1-6 (incorrect) against your rivals. You're 0-3 against Ohio State. There's a lot of pressure building on Jim Harbaugh right now... from Michigan's two biggest rival fan bases who, in the end, have completely no say in his employment as head coach, and whose ultimate goal is to create a national narrative by which Harbaugh leaves so they don't have to play against his teams before they blow up and start winning Big 10 and National Titles."

End quote.



July 31st, 2018 at 4:42 PM ^

"Hot seat" generally means "job in jeopardy." Harbaugh is in a unique situation here. Michigan fans have high expectations, and if he doesn't meet them, we'll be unhappy. We can be rational about what an ND loss means all we want (yes, it is absolutely possible to bury the sting of such a loss with wins over the rivals, and it is not unrealistic to think that Michigan could do this) but it is going to FEEL really bad if we lose.

If this is a mediocre year, the fanbase will be very unpleasant.

But Harbaugh is also: 1. Our guy; 2. The big-name signing with a history of huge success.

There is, literally, no one Michigan could expect to be able to hire who would have a greater chance of winning at Michigan. If Harbaugh isn't getting it done, we'll be ornery, but there is no greener grass on the other side. 

If Harbaugh puts up a couple of 8-4 seasons in 18 and 19, I will conclude regretfully that Michigan is never going to get to a level of national elite. There will be a loss of fan enthusiasm; the Stadium might actually dip below 100,000 even in the cooked books for a game or three. But if that happens, there is nobody that Michigan can get that we can reasonably expect to do better, and for that reason I think Harbaugh gets to stay. 


July 31st, 2018 at 8:50 PM ^

I'm of the same mindset. If he drinks it up for the next 2 years I'm going to basically conclude that Michigan just isn't a football powerhouse anymore. But unless there are major off the field issues I wouldn't be calling for his head. I don't know who I would want in his place.


But I don't think that's going to happen. I think harbaugh made some very important changes in the off-season that will start to pay dividends this season and will fully mature next season. It's time.


July 31st, 2018 at 4:42 PM ^

Winning in South Bend boils down to executing the plays on offense. Going back to Harbaugh's first game against Utah, the play calling was excellent in that game. A few dropped balls, bad passes, and badly timed penalties was all it took to cost the game. Hell all but a couple games was that the case. My gut tells me that we come out firing on all cylinders and win. From everything you hear or read about the players is that they have something to prove and they will.

yossarians tree

July 31st, 2018 at 5:01 PM ^

Our defense is going to hold ND to very few scores. They are run-heavy with a QB who struggles with accuracy and they are replacing a few NFL OL. That sounds one-dimensional to me. 

The advantage we'll have offensively is they really have no idea what we are going to be. They only have our shitty offense of last year to scout which will now likely have Patterson at QB doing things that nobody on our team could do last year. That and I expect our OL will be significantly better at pass pro and possibly outstanding in the run game. Defensive struggle first half but Michigan pulls away in the second.

Mr Grainger

July 31st, 2018 at 4:54 PM ^

The best unit on the field that night will be Michigan's defense. The offense just needs to take care of the football to win. That's probably true in all our games this season.


July 31st, 2018 at 4:59 PM ^

The biggest key to beating Notre dame is pressuring wimbush early. He is a poor mans JT Barrett with even worse accuracy than Barrett. Force him into obvious passing situations, which is what don browns defenses are amazing at. If they can do that they win by 10+. I wouldn't be surprised if Wimbush struggles early we see their backup who's a much better pocket passer. 


July 31st, 2018 at 5:29 PM ^

Hot seat BS just reminds me again that the media have no clue what they are talking about. And if that's true in this case, how many other things are they lame about. 


July 31st, 2018 at 6:26 PM ^

Just support the team.  Its ok to have some constructive criticism; however, in this age of mindless social media, your negative post may be the difference in a commit. There are families out there that don't get class nor integrity and live by the internet vibe.

... and still will never figure out how a Michigan grad or fan could sell their tickets to the opponent in a rival game.  Not blue in my view ... sorry.



July 31st, 2018 at 7:08 PM ^

Jim is on the hot seat if we lose to Notre Dame 31-0.  Short of that, no, not on hot seat.  I agree with the posts that say our enemies want him fired because he is good.  Tired of hearing about it even on the board.  Enjoy the season.  There are still weaknesses on the team, but anybody who watched 2014 Utah and Minnesota and then saw Jim turn those players (less Gardner and Funchess) into sort of an offensive machine and start winning right away will be forever grateful.  The rest is crap.