Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Wolverine Wednesday: Who Has The Wheel?

Jim Harbaugh is very important to Michigan Football's future and it seems every leader at U of M understands that.  The issue might be there are too many "cooks in the kitchen".  

As Jimmy has now interviewed with his second NFL team last night (Atlanta), we don't have clear signs who is leading the negotiation on keeping Jimmy in Ann Arbor.   Is it Warde? Is it Santa? or is it the Board of Regents and Jordan Acker?

Jordan Acker tweeted out, that he loves Jimmy and wants him to coach at Michigan for as long as he likes.  But he is not interested in negotiating through the public or press.   The second part of that tweet, is from JUB and Yahoo finding out that Jimmy is looking for "immunity" for the 2 current NCAA situations and that a 3 person panel review his status of head coach if future situations warrant his dismissal. 

That signals to me Jimmy does not trust Warde at all and that he of course does not believe he did anything wrong regarding the 2 NCAA investigations.  The panel of 3 review does not seem like a deal breaker to me.  That is common for Presidents at Universities and Jimmy's salary and status would seem to warrant that activity.  The NCAA thing is a bit tricky for the U of M lawyers as they have only received 1 of the 2 NCAA notices of infractions. 

Speaking of Warde, he is at a tipping point in his career here at Michigan.  If he F's up this Harbaugh situation and doesn't resolve the Juwan situation in a respectful manner, he will be looking for his next AD job.  In fact, I wouldn't mind if Michigan moved in another direction right now.  As both situations, might be too big for him to handle. 

  • TE Matt Hibner enters the transfer portal as grad transfer.  Hibner was a 2020 recruit and played in 23 snaps this season and in 28 games his entire career.  He totaled 2 catches for 15 yards in his career.  
  • Former Michigan assistant coach for 5 minutes, Maurice Linguist before taking the head coaching role at Buffalo is leaving the Bulls for an assist role at Alabama.  Less Snow - More Money.


Chowman said...

Bob do you really think Jim wants to stay in AA. He's setting the University up as his fall back position. If Jim really wanted to stay they'd of had a contract hammered out by now. He's hoping for an NFL gig. From the day he walked into Schembechler Hall, he had 1 eye toward going back to the league. No pun intended, but Jim has little brother syndrome. Not only did his brother win a SB, he beat him. Most people could eventually move on, Jim cannot! He and his agent just keep moving the goal posts to drag things out. If Jim does end up back in AA for 2024 it'll be because he struck out on every NFL opening.

Chowman said...

As far as Warde, there are a lot of things to bag on Warde about. The hockey scandal, Juwan's antics, etc, but you can't blame him if Jim leaves. For Jim, Michigan was NEVER a "last stop" coaching job. He wasn't going to retire as the Michigan HC if he had anything to say about it. Only way Jim comes back is if he misses on all the openings he got interviewed for. But even if he comes back to Michigan, its wash, rinse, repeat. We'll be right back here next year unless the wheels come completely off and we go 6-6.

Goose said...

I agree and would add that no gets an immunity clause. That’s unheard of, the contract is there to sign its appropriate concerning money. As an institution I would never grant immunity for past or future indiscretions. Give him an ultimatum sign by the Monday or the new contract is void. Jim can operate under his current If the If the nfl doesn’t pan out. Michigan will get a new coach after next season or he can choose to resign & be job less. He kinda seems a bit like a high maintenance girl friend, it’s all “look at me with my new girl” at first but after a few months your broke and have lost all your friends and she’s kinda ugly anyway.

Goblu said...

I disagree that no one gets an immunity clause. What’s being asked for (based on what I’m reading) is that he’s saying based on what is currently known, he won’t be fired. It’s not that if they find out he orchestrated the stallions thing or purposely lied about 🍔 gate. Given current information, you won’t fire me once it becomes public and once the ncaa levies punishment.

There is zero wrong with that position.

That is a very normal thing to ask, and it’s something the school would be pretty wise to accept. Unless what the ncaa already provided re Stallions is somehow damning. In which case they should already have fired him.

Ron said...

At this point I don't think it really matters what Michigan offers him in the way of money I think if the Chargers offer the job he's gone.. I'm sure he feels the mission has been accomplished here .. I wouldn't be surprised if the Chargers don't offer him both coach and general manager or assistant general manager

Brady2017 said...

Lots of interesting takes in here today, some more speculation than fact. So here is what we DO know. FACTS ONLY-

1. Jimmy likes to explore the job market after every season. Who among us reading this Blog haven't done the same thing? Jim's motivation is not clear.

2. Jimmy has never left Michigan. He interviews for jobs, but no one knows who's declining who.

3. Jimmy has restored the Michigan legacy. The program is on elite status for the first time since 2006. Things have never looked brighter for the program.

4. Warde stated at the ceremony at Crisler that he is working to get Jimmy signed to a new contract, indicating he and UM will do what they can to bring him back.

To say "He has a little brother syndrome", or "He can't wait to leave", or "His heart is in the NFL" is all rumors, opinions, and bullshit. That kind of propaganda only clouds the picture.

Brady2017 said...

Warde has already gotten Jimmy to sign a new contract back when EVERYONE wanted Jimmy fired. To say he can't get it done again seems to go against the facts.

Chowman said...

Difference is Brady, when most of us look for new jobs, it typically has zero effect on the entire organization. It doesn't even make a ripple.

He hasn't left, not because he's turned downed jobs, but because nobody has offered him. He gets and offer: HE GONE!

Yes he's cemented a legacy, doesn't mean he gets to burn the place down on the way out.

What else is Warde going to say, let alone at the celebration? "yeah, we're tired of the bullshit and moving on" Come on man, that was your 2nd weakest take, after #2.

Doesn't take a swami to put things together. Jim has the biggest supporter in Santa Ono. If Jim wanted a contract, a contract would be done right now. Michigan is the girl next door. He's out trying to woo the supermodel to go to prom with him, but if that falls through, he'll settle for the girl next door.

Maybe you like dancing along with the Jimbo NFL hokie pokie, but there are others of us that have grown tired of it. He hasn't done too much damage yet, but that can change on a dime!

Brady2017 said...

Do people know Juwan missed the majority of this season due to heart surgery? And yet everyone is calling for his head. I would hate to have this same situation happen to anyone reading this today. Juwan already had successful seasons and led Michigan to a Sweet 16 finish. We knew going in that no one would instantly be the next John Beilein. Not too many people are capable of pulling that one off. We knew Juwan had no head coaching experience and would be required to grow into this position. Give him time to grow. Is this championship level basketball right now? No. Is it Detroit Piston 3-45 basketball? No. Juwan has all the traits necessary to be a terrific head coach. And one trait in particular that is hard to find these days- Juwan has a heart of gold. He would die for this program. Let him rebuild. Remember, you all wanted Jimmy fired 4 years ago and look what happened.

Brady2017 said...

Chowman- Learn the difference between opinions and facts. They are greatly different. Facts are indisputable. Opinions are like ass holes- everyone's got one!

Tim said...

Brady2017 - I agree with you. Well said.

I am old enough to remember the tough years of RR and Hoke. Personally, I can live with Harbaugh testing the market and getting paid what he is worth. Immunity, whatever you want to call it...I can support it.

He is an elite coach and if he leaves our team will suffer. We cannot just plug in Moore or another coach and think we will win 12 games.

Personally, I hope he stays at Michigan and I am willing to wait, be patience and support him.

Brady2017 said...

I've stated on here before that no one likes Jim's dog and pony show, myself included. But I'll always respect the man that has stayed at Michigan through thick and thin and put up with countless obstacles along the way. NCAA investigations, suspensions, Tony Petitti, FBI surveillance, a reduced contract, people calling for him to be fired. And how does Jimmy respond? By winning a National Championship. I've met the man. I've shaken Jimmy's hand and chatted with him. I don't think any REAL Michigan fan would throw shade on him after what he's accomplished here. Maybe the Buckeye and Sparty fans would, but not true Michigan fans. You don't have to like his anual job interviewing, but never forget what he's given to this program. GO BLUE!!

Chowman said...

That's right, everyone's got one and most stink. You don't have to like what I have to say. You're a glass half full, hell you're a glass runnith over guy. I'm a realist. I'm sure you're think this is some leverage play. Great, what more leverage does he need besides winning a Naty and having the best 3 year run in recent history. It just doesn't make sense to me if Jim wanted to stay, he wouldn't already have a signed contract. These dalliances with the NFL can't help recruiting. His biggest booster is Santa Ono.

As far as Juwan, what has he done other than being a member of the Fab 5 and who brought scandal to the basketball team and put the program in the toilet for decades. His best years as the Michigan coach was with John Beilein's players! Argue it, its a fact. His teams have no identity. They aren't good shooting teams. They don't play good defense. They don't rebound well. They aren't tough. What is his coaching schemes? John's teams shot the 3 and played some really good D? How bout Juwan's teams? What do they do well? Does he make good in game adjustments? What has been his notoriety as the Michigan HC? Can't keep his hands to himself? How bout last year, when it was obvious the team was better when Jett was hurt and they ran the offense thru Kobe Bufkin. When Jett came back, he once again became the focal point of the team, even with the team floundered and the other 4 players on the court looked lost. Here I'll spell it out for you in case its too hard for you to pick up that this is my OPINION: Juwan did more last season to showcase his son and his draft status then he did winning basketball games.

Brady2017 said...

Tim- I agree, buddy. Let's hope he comes back!

Chowman said...

oh and Brady: when Juwan was recovering from his surgery, the team played better under Phil Martelli than they are now with Juwan back at the helm.

szanreno said...

Realist, that's rich...

Goose said...

Imagine a program that wins it all. That program should be leveraging that championship into recruiting success. Instead Jim leverages his and the program’s success into more money,& immunity for past issues. Basically squandering the opportunities that success should bring with it. While other coaching staffs are busy recruiting their own and other players picking up transfers from the portal working on bettering NIL opportunities. We are on harbaugh watch. Hoping he will get back to work one day soon. Next season he will be asking for something else perhaps a seat on the board of regents maybe a senate seat or possibly tickets on the next space shuttle. Is a harbaugh presidency out of the question? The list is endless but be assured it will be something.

Tim said...

Goose - I 100% agree. His end of season antics get old. Very old. I am a normal middle class dad and how he acts just seems odd to me. However, I do think to myself, I have been frustrated the last several years for the same reasons you listed. But he has found a way to field a strong team and win. From Penn State to Washington I was frustrated how many times we did a conservative play call on 3rd down and just punted. But his - seemingly - lack of recruiting, lack of NIL, lack of urgency on 3rd downs all seemed to work in the end.

I am realizing that Jimmy has a plan and it seems to be working. He certainly marches to the beat of his own drum. If he comes back in 2024 and goes 8-4 then, yes, he is 100% to blame and his end of season antics would be the root cause of things. If he comes back and competes for another B10 title, maybe we admit he has a master plan. If he leaves, then I will be frustrated but at least he left us with a NC banner.

DHB said...

I’m rather tired of Jim’s commitment to UofM. He’s not. He’s only interested in his opportunity to be an NFL coach. If he wasn’t, he wouldn’t be participating in all these interviews. He’s only hurting his “boys” that he proclaims to be so concerned about. If he was honest, he’d quit UofM and then proceed to look for an NFL job. But he doesn’t to that. He keeps UofM on the line and doesn’t let them find a coach who is committed to Uof M. I’m a long time fan and supporter of UofM football, but Jim appears to only be interested in Him. He did a great job of leading this team to a National Championship, but he’s not acting like he’s concerned about Team 145 now. It’s time NOW, JIM to make a decision. . . . Either go for the NFL or be 100% committed to UofM. You’re loosing commitments and failing to get commitments because nobody can be assured that you’re interested in coaching UofM in the future.

Thanks for your accomplishment at UofM, but get off the pot and either quit. . . . Or be 110% committed to UofM.

We’re tired of your games.