Just the facts...and a little perspective

Submitted by MGolem on November 18th, 2017 at 9:49 PM

Jim Harbaugh played in the AFC Championship, and came one dropped hail mary from playing in the Super Bowl; he was also a pro-bowler the same year.

Jim Harbaugh gave birth to Stanford football as we know it today.

Jim Harbaugh resurrected a moribund 49ers team and came one muffed punt from coaching in back-to-back Super Bowls.

In Jim Harbaugh’s time as the coach at Michigan he has not gone a full season without losing at least one quarterback at some point during the year.

Michigan is one of only two teams in the current top 25 starting a backup quarterback due to injury (Georgia is the other); no other team is starting their third stringer. Michigan is the only team in the top 25 who has played, and won, a game with three different starting quarterbacks.

Now...for a little perspective: In 2013 Jimbo Fisher’s Florida State team was crowned National Champions; they also went 13-1 the next year. His current team, who was in the top 2 to start the season, is 4-6, with a backup quarterback. Two years ago Mark Richt was run out of town at Georgia. This year his Miami team is 10-0 and ranked number 3. Does anyone think Jimbo Fisher forgot how to coach? Does anyone now think Mark Richt is one of the three best coaches in the country?

Anyone who suggests Harbaugh doesn’t know what he is doing, is somehow overrated, or better yet is the “fourth best coach in his own division” is ridiculous.





November 18th, 2017 at 10:28 PM ^

All of the things I wrote were true before the game began. Harbaugh has not had good luck with QB health. We were the only team in the top 25 (at 11:59am EST this morning) to start, and win, with 3 different QBs, and we are one of only two teams starting a backup due to injury. 

I am not sure why anyone thought we should win this game. Wisconsin's defense is excellent against the run, and playing with half a playbook, due to lack of knowledge (Peters), or lack of confidence (Okorn), is no way to beat a team like Wisconsin that can take away our only solid offensive option. 

I just don't get why everyone is acting like the ship is sinking after losing to a team we had no business beating, all things considered. 


November 18th, 2017 at 10:48 PM ^

You indicated that no other team in the Top 25 is starting a 3rd stringer at QB....well neither is Michigan. Since Peters started today (and the past two weeks), he's not a third stringer. Second string at worst. He clearly beat JOK out for the second spot...and did so before today.


November 18th, 2017 at 11:10 PM ^

three different starters, one of whom was third string to start the season. We have lost our starter to a broken neck, our backup to general suckitude, and now his backup to what sounds like a concussion. If you want to nitpick who slots in where go for it.


November 19th, 2017 at 8:28 AM ^

Are you intentionally being ignorant or do you honestly not get it?

1) We have a QB who's been with the system for 2 years and doesn't know half the playbook.

2) Our offensive line isn't any younger than some of the other lines around the country over the years that have mauled people, ours is barely functional.

3) Our 2016 senior laden nfl-lite team shit the bed against iowa and ohio state (the then youngest team in the land)

4) The offensive play calling has been suspect since the pepcat, since there were no special wrinkles left for osu and iowa last year, and this entire year of incoherent nonsense.

5) Recruiting rankings are regressing to levels that are not going to make this team a stable contender and they are doing so at at alarmingly fast rate.


November 19th, 2017 at 8:38 AM ^

except for #5, which is simply silly. We had a great recruiting year last year, this year due to a lower number of available scholarships we knew it wasn't going to be a bang up year, and there is still a lot of time left to pull in good guys. And even if this years turns out not great, that doesn't indicate anything in the future unless the following year is as well, which is highly unlikely. Your point is way overstated

I Like Burgers

November 19th, 2017 at 9:44 AM ^

I've returned to my Hoke era ways and I'm trying hard to just ignore the various comment threads.  Idiots are out in full force and they appear to be multiplying.

In the preseason, reasonable people saw this as a 9-3 or 8-4 kind of year with things tipping toward the bad end if the wrong people got hurt.  The wrong people got hurt and they're going to be 9-3 or 8-4 now.

This shouldn't be alarming...but somehow it is because the fuckwits amongst us felt like this could be an 11-1 or 10-2 kind of year becasue they apparently looked at our roster, the experience on the team, and the schedule and thought things were going to be great.  Those same fuckwits are the ones weighing in with the dumbass opinions now. Ignore them because they are fucking morons.

And yes, special snowflakes reading this thinking "I'm not one of those morons because of X, Y, and Z..."  Yes.  Yes you are.  You are so fucking dumb it makes my head hurt.

MGolem, keep up the good fight, fighting back the dumb on this site.  I retract my previous snark.



November 18th, 2017 at 9:54 PM ^

Jim Harbaugh's NFL accomplishments do not matter here. They literally have zero bearing. If it makes you feel better to repeat them over and over, great. But bottom line is until one of his team's in college win a conference title, he will continue to be below the coaches in this conference that have.


November 18th, 2017 at 10:21 PM ^

That Bill Callahan, who got to the Super Bowl with John Gruden's team, where he got his doors blown off and has done nothing since, is the equal of Jim Harbaugh? I see you are conveniently ignoring the fact that Harbaugh went to 3 straight NFC championship games (demonstrating sustained success). 

Bill Callahan fell on his face immediately after that embarrassment of a Super Bowl and the Raiders were a really good team prior to his arrival, going to the AFC Championship two years earlier, and losing to the Patriots the next year in the tuck rule game. The 49ers were hot garbage prior to Harbaugh's arrival. 


November 18th, 2017 at 10:59 PM ^

However, consistency is consistency. And this coach has  been a consistent winner at every level, including here. His teams here have met the bar for expected success, but not in getting to the next level in beating high quality teams rated higher than ours, which is the fan base rub and pain we are feeling.

Yes, it's fair to criticize this coach on having not gotten a championship here yet. But the reason he is expected to produce on a higher plane is because his previous record demonstrated the ability to achieve that success  at both the college and pro level. Winning is still about the process of building a winning program in your own image and creation. Whether three years ought to be a significant guage of ongoing and greater accomplishment is always subject to debate.

I am very disappointed tonight. But not because the boys didn't play well today. They played like the team that they are, full of energy, talent and commitment to success, but not possessing the kind of belief based on execution to overcome adversity in whatever form it comes. And it shows up throughout the season and in every game through injuries, bad calls and failed play-making. Can you play through that and find a way to win? This team isn't there yet for whatever reason. And because it hasn't it leaves a depressing feeling going into our biggest game of every season.



November 18th, 2017 at 10:55 PM ^

Also couldn't you say Harbaugh got to the NFC title game with Mike Singletary's team? Or went 10-3 and 10-3 with Hoke's team? You can't have it both ways. We fired a guy because he won with the previous coach's guys but couldn't win with his own. I'm not saying we're gonna fire Harbaugh, he will never be fired here. But the people who think he's immune from any criticism because of past NFL accomplishments are idiots. I just hope he makes the necessary changes this off-season, because it wasn't bad luck, bad weather, youth, bad refs, or the other 18 excuses we had a poor offense this year, it was an offensive staff problem.


November 18th, 2017 at 11:19 PM ^

With Singletary's guys, who sucked when they played for Singletary. I am not saying he should be immune from criticism, I am saying anyone who says because those results were achieved in a professional environment they don't count is being ridiculous. It isn't a one to one comparison but it is curious that you are ignoring the part about his Stanford success. I didn't include his successes at San Diego because frankly it was just too much fluff but those successes demonstrate an overall abulity to win, and win a lot, in a number of different environments and situations. 

Our offense has looked lost at times this year, but again, we led the Big Ten in scoring last year. And we are playing our third qb, unlike every other good team in the country. It seems unreasonable to expect this year's team to look like last year's team, or many of Harbaugh's vintage teams, at a number of different stops.


November 18th, 2017 at 11:20 PM ^

There is no fucking plan B. We knew all along that Harbaugh is plan A through Z. He will get as long as he wants and everyone here obviously hopes that happens to be a very successful 20 years.

But to act like he is immune to criticism is just bullshit. These hot takes of "is Harbaugh the 4th best coach in the B1G??!!" won't go away because in the eyes of any non-Michigan fan he has accomplished significantly less than Meyer, Dantonio, Franklin, and Chyrst at the college level.

I am also sick of the fucking excuses. Shit is going to happen every fucking year. You know how I know that? Because it literally always does. Injuries. Bad calls. Bad luck. Blah blah it makes me want to fucking barf. This program hasn't had a marquee win in over a decade. Iowa can beat OSU in a year they go 6-5, but Michigan can only beat their "arch-rival" once in 13 fucking years?

Occam's Razor

November 18th, 2017 at 11:26 PM ^

Someone who gets it. 

Recruits also watch big games. They consistently see Michigan underperforming. 2018 will have at least 3 marquee away games on primetime. 

So again Fuck Dave Brandon for scheduling MSU and OSU away games on the same year and a second wtf to Ward Manuel for scheduling AWAY ND on the same year in 2018 instead of a home game first in 2018 in the 1-1. 




November 18th, 2017 at 11:51 PM ^

THIS is something to really be pissed about. We are literally making it harder for ourselves to win anything with that type of schedule. MSU and OSU both away? Ok fine, we get them both at home the next year. But to give up the home Arkansas game to schedule Notre Dame away? What in the fuck?!


November 19th, 2017 at 6:56 AM ^

that Manuel's hands were tied when Harbaugh likely told him that he wants ND no matter what and get it done ASAP. Manuel's part of the job is to give Harbaugh what he wants. If that's true, then you should be pissed at Harbaugh for it.


November 18th, 2017 at 10:33 PM ^

Bill Callahan coached 2 seasons in the NFL, finished 3rd in his division the year he didn't win it, and left the league with a sub-.500 record.


Harbaugh coached twice as long in the league and left with one of the 5 best winning percentages of all time. He was also a college head coach for years before he was an NFL coach. Harbaugh's NFL record matters because 1) it's incredibly impressive, and 2) it is in line with his record everywhere else he's been, which is also excellent. I don't even know if you're souring on Harbaugh, just don't like this post, whatever...but Callahan is a stupid example to make whatever point you're trying to make. Mediocre coaches luck into really good teams in the NFL all the time and have one-off good years. Check out Lovie Smith. Gruden would be another example. Gary Kubiak. etc. etc. It takes a really good coach to leave the NFL with a record above .600. Some good coaches don't (Saban), but I think the idea that being a good coach in the NFL means nothing about your ability to coach a college team is dumb, especially when you pick bad NFL coaches to support your point.


November 18th, 2017 at 10:59 PM ^

People forget that Pep was also the receiving coach on Jim's last Stanford team that went 12-1 and had Doug Baldwin, Chris Owusu, Coby Fleener, Griff and Ryan Whalen, Zach Ertz, Andrew Luck threw for 3300 yards. Drev was the OL coach. I would wait until we have some developed receivers to call Pep ass. I think we need a legit receiver coach that played the position, but I'm still reserving judgment on Pep.


November 18th, 2017 at 11:29 PM ^

And what if I told you that we have better talent than Jim had at Stanford? Peters, Higdon, DPJ, Black, McKeon, Gentry will all play in the NFL. Many on the line will play in the NFL. Problem is that most of our great talent isn't even 20 years old yet. The year before Stanford went 12-1 they went 8-5 with that same talent. Patience grasshopper.


November 18th, 2017 at 10:45 PM ^

While I don't necessarily disagree with your overall point, Harbaugh's NFL record is so good because he didn't have the losses on the front or back end of his success. The reasons for that are:

1)He inherited a team that was widely expected to win the division in 2010 and totally tanked. And then they added Kaepernick and Aldon Smith in the draft before he'd even coached a game. It's highly unusual to get a coaching gig in the NFL after a firing and inherit the talent that he did which included about a dozen pro bowlers. 

2)He was fired prematurely because their owner is an idiot (obviously). However, that actually benefited his W-L record because if he had stuck around he would have been stuck with the downside of the NFL's roster/draft/salary cap cycle. No doubt he would have done better than Tomsula and Kelly but they were 8-8 in 2014 and that was before even more talent attrition. 

He's a good coach, obviously, but the timing of his hiring and firing was about as conducive as could be for having a good winning %.