The Harbaugh Problem

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ThirdStringPoster's picture

Willing to start a go fund me account to keep him there

O - H ...

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LCT's picture

Harbaugh's done. They can't tolerate a loss to a first-year OSU HC at their place to make him 0-5. He'll "retire" so as to preserve some measure of dignity. They won't do a Michigan Man any other way.

Lifetime vs. UM: L 9-1, C 8-0, T 5-0
Ohio State University President Jim Tressel

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Dstacify's picture

Not taking into account that this is one of the greatest OSU teams in a long while (first year head coach or not)? I'm pretty sure at this point in the season few people are looking at Ryan Day's inexperience as a liability given the way his team has played. Harbaugh will definitely take heat if he loses on Saturday but if it's at least a close game they might be more willing to be patient with him. I think he's more likely to leave on his own terms to go back to the NFL than Michigan is to outright fire him.

11 Strong.

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RunEddieRun1983's picture

I think looking back they probably saw this year, Day's first, new HC etc as the best possible chance to beat the Buckeyes and finally try to turn the tide, but little did they know in Columbus, a juggernaut has been born.

Urban Meyer left an incredible legacy. 12/4/18 Ryan Day begins his.

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mb5599's picture

He's not going anywhere. Who else are they gong to get?  If Jim Harbaugh cannot right the ship up there, who can?  Also, not sure anyone in the NFL wants him.  

Big B

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Buckabroad's picture

Tend to agree. Not having a clear option seems even more precarious considering the huge buy-out TTUN would have to pay to be free of him.

Also, many TTUN fans apparently are ok with paying Harbaugh Nick Saban's salary for recurring 9 or 10 win seasons without any championships.

"The minute we stop expecting greatness, we become Wisconsin."

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novabuckeye's picture

I hear Greg Schiano is available!

Go Bucks!

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hetuk2002's picture

The interesting aspect of his contract states that he has to try and find another job, in good faith, should he be bought out.  I hear Rutgers is hiring!

Tressel for prez, tOSU or USA, I'm good with either

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thatzuhYikes's picture

Who else are they gong to get?

I really hate this excuse, you know who they get? ANY up and coming coordinator or coach. 

You have to take chances and straight up no way they are any worse off at Michigan if they take a guy like Mr. Row your boat.

Bo Pelini can do exactly what Harbaugh has done and then some. Harbaugh STILL HAS DONE NOTHING. I don't even hate him or anything, he has just never won a single thing ever, yet everyone says "who could replace him?" Wow he beat USC....ok?!?!

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Fatpants's picture

Moved to College Sports, as nobody wants Harbaugh anywhere closer to Ohio State Football 

PG <3 PG

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OSU56's picture

Enjoying daily the back to back ttun beatdowns.

 

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Fatpants's picture

Depends on Saturday. He has to show that they’re closing the gap. 

PG <3 PG

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Earle's picture

I don't have a Harbaugh problem.

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fishleehooker's picture

I don't think they get rid of him unless they think they can get someone better.  Its usually that simple.  I think its still a couple years before the seat gets real hot, but who knows?

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blu.fan's picture

Harbaugh isn't going anywhere. He isn't a bad coach. He's actually pretty good. The problem is that he is coaching Michigan at the exact same time that OSU is the death star. Joel Klatt talked about this a couple weeks ago. OSU has a stranglehold on the Big 10, and isn't letting go. Any time a team is that good (OSU, Bama, Clemson, Southern Cal years ago,) it is absolute murder for the other teams in the conference. Once you are an elite death star, you don't let anyone challenge your supremacy.

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Urban Achiever's picture

I agree.  I don't think the result of The Game this year carries a lot of weight when they're judging whether to move on from Harbaugh. 

0-5 wouldn't look good, and if that happens there's not much reason for optimism moving forward in terms of ability to beat OSU -- But given how (historically) good OSU has been this year I'd be surprised if this was considered a "coaching for his job" situation.  They know right now whether they want him back or not.    

On the other hand, if TUN pulls the upset, there will be talk of a lifetime contract.

Go Bucks!!

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Dstacify's picture

The thing about OSU is as great as Urban Meyer was they probably would've eventually declined under him the longer he had stuck around (the Iowa and Purdue debacles in 2017 and 2018 showed that he was losing his edge a little bit). Meyer electing to retire after the 2018 season and hand the reins over to Day came at the perfect time because the team already had elite talent in place, Day is a competent enough coach to push them over the hump that they were struggling to get over in Urban's final years, and Day just happens to be a young guy and an innovative offensive mind who has adapted well to the times. That's a big reason why OSU is where they are at currently (that and landing a player like Justin Fields courtesy of the transfer portal doesn't hurt either).

11 Strong.

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novabuckeye's picture

"Competent enough??"  I think his ability to assemble an outstanding defensive staff, and to attract top notch QBs make him an outstanding head coach right there.  We can quibble over the conservative play calling versus Penn State, but he didn't get to 11-0 simply by inheriting Urban Meyer's team and keeping the ship sailing in the exact same direction.  If elite talent were all there was to it, we would have been playing in the national championship games the last two years.  But, the final word will come this Saturday when we see if he can start off 1-0 versus Xichigan.

Go Bucks!

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tcm1968's picture

That's part of it for sure. But that doesn't explain having to bring in transfer QBs instead of developing them, 1-3 in bowl games, not being the same team away from the big house and the record to end the season. 4-8 the last 3 games of the season in his first 4 years. He also has hasn't been good against ranked opponents. 

I get the Buckeyes being the Buckeyes make it tough to win the East and the big ten as a whole...  but he's 47-15 so far and only 4 of those losses are against my Buckeyes.. 

Over the same 5 year period Clemson, Bama and my Buckeyes have 15 losses combined.. 

He's basically a 9-3 coach. You guys aren't getting what you are paying for ( 3rd highest paid coach) but maybe that's ok... 

I don't think he goes anywhere this year.. The more likely scenario is we score a bunch of points and so does your Bowl opponent and he moves on from Don Brown. 

Go Bucks!

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blu.fan's picture

that doesn't explain having to bring in transfer QBs instead of developing them

Pot, meet kettle. And tell me where OSU would be this year without Fields? Very good, but perhaps not on the same plane. However, I am pretty confident that Michigan goes with a recruited QB, Dylan McCaffrey or Joe Milton, next year. One of them should be pretty good.

1-3 in bowl games . . . 4-8 the last 3 games of the season in his first 4 years.

Regarding the bowl games, they have become more and more meaningless. I'm pretty sure you are going to see more guys who are projected first round picks sit out meaningless bowls, going forward. It sucks, but it is the reality. Once you have nothing to prove, and risk injury, it isn't worth it. I'm a little bitter about last year, but there's no point whining. Let's just say that I have heard from insiders that the attitude in the locker room is massively improved this year. There is less focus on the NFL among the team's stars. I think it is less likely for Michigan's roster to be decimated in this year's bowl game, wherever it is. Regarding 4 - 8, remember that 4 of those losses are against OSU.

He's basically a 9-3 coach.

Harbaugh recognized that what he was doing wasn't working. Which is why they went to Gattis at OC. It took more than half the season to get comfortable with an RPO spread offense, and to be honest, they still are ascending. I believe that with the changes made, starting next year, Michigan is a 10 - 2 or 11 - 1 team, still with a loss to OSU. I can live with that for now.

This year, I have consistently predicted OSU will win, and still believe that is the most likely outcome. If somehow, Michigan should manage to win, it would be a reflection on Harbaugh, and could badly damage OSU's postseason prospects. Michigan clearly has less talent than OSU. The Buckeyes are a death star. If the Wolverines win, they are doing it with less talent, which is always a reflection on coaching. As for recruiting, a Michigan win could make a difference with 3 kids having 4 stars who are still considering Michigan for the 2020 class. It could also make a difference for 2021 recruiting, and pull Michigan closer to OSU.

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Dstacify's picture

In regards to transfers stopgap guys like Jake Rudock, John O'Korn, and Shea Patterson aren't exactly on the level of Justin Fields. Plus Haskins is the main reason why Fields is at OSU currently (he highly recommended Day to him last season). Day would have to be nothing short of a massive dumbass to turn a talent like Fields down if he wanted to come here.

11 Strong.

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thatzuhYikes's picture

Uh, Joe fucking Burrow is OSU's QB right now without Fields.

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Zonabuck's picture

Burrow was gone long before Fields was even considering OSU. Tater or Baldwin would be our guys. 

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blu.fan's picture

I thought Burrow left when Haskins was named starter, so he wouldn't be OSU's QB right now. Do I have the timing wrong?

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cledaybuck's picture

Harbaugh isn't going anywhere, win or lose on Saturday.

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EvanstonBuckeye's picture

No, not unless it's a very unique result, like a 30+ point loss, or less than 150 yards of total offense. 

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hetuk2002's picture

How far is the woodshed from the Big House?

Tressel for prez, tOSU or USA, I'm good with either

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TMac's picture

Jimmy is coaching to their level - they have only won 11 games or more 4 times since 1972 while we have failed to win 11 games or more 4 times since 2001. 

Harbaugh for Life!

#ItsGreatToBeABUCKEYE

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buckeyeupnorth's picture

Harbaugh is not going to be fired or asked to retire or leave in any manner regardless as to what happens Saturday. 

As long as his teams keep a majority win record, appear to be improving ever so slightly, and more importantly, have few if any off field problems, he will stay.  They do need to win their bowl games or he is going to be feeling heat. Bringing in younger coaches who want to move the team in a more modern direction was a major concession for him as has his dialing back all the idiotic stuff he was doing when he first arrived, and in the eyes of donors and seat purchasers at *ichigan stadium, a big plus. 

Notice he is no longer doing "recruiting of the stars" , overnight campouts with recruits, saying anything that popped in his head to piss off other HC, etc.  The khaki commercial is stupid, but so is Saban doing commercials for Aflac. Good lord, do they really need the money? He appears to have actually stepped back and is allowing Gattis to direct the offense. Brown seems to be running the defense and Jimmy seems to just be agreeing to most of it, including whatever is dictated on the sidelines. 

Those who stay will do so because they quit bringing the wrong kind of attention to the university. Not because they will be champions.

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BuckIhateTTUN's picture

Couldn't agree more about the commercials. That's such a bad look. Never mind that coaches are paid multimillion-dollar contracts to coach young men who can't benefit financially from their own likenesses (at least for now), a few coaches have to throw endorsements in the kids' faces, too? AND on national TV, on game day. WTF? Just...not...good.  Harbaugh's Downy commercial playing while his team was getting beaten like a drum by Wisconsin was the perfect illustration of why those kind of endorsement deals are not a good idea. Zero % class, zero % situational awareness, 100% NCAA hypocrisy.

"You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least, you need a beer." - Frank Zappa

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Wargor's picture

You had, "taken to the cleaners" right there on the sideline just begging to get in and you went with 'beaten like a drum'.  Sure, you got the win, but the style points were lacking. 

;)

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hetuk2002's picture

It isn't just him, Saban has his insurance commercials, Urban was going to be the Breakfast coach for Bob Evans before the Zach Smith saga, I am not a fan of his in the least bit but I think all these guys do it, if they can. I'm on the side of everyone making money too, just saying

Tressel for prez, tOSU or USA, I'm good with either

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niblick's picture

getting lucky against Army and Iowa saved his ass, 7-5 he's gone.  9-3 will get him another year.

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MichiganBuckeye222's picture

They won’t fire him...according to MGoBloggers

1.  The reason they don’t win is because he doesn’t cheat.   
 

2  their academic standards are higher than OSUs

3. He actually won in 2016...but the refs were paid off by Urban Liar

4. They are a basketball school now.  
5. They would rather lose than be “cooler poopers” like we are.  
 

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BrewstersMillions's picture

I don't think he's going anywhere. All jokes aside, he did a nice job of righting the ship. I get that they lost to UW, PSU, and will lose to OSU but this was a team that hardly beat Army. And yes their competition sucked (hint-most teams play bad teams, OSU included) and yes their players suck, and yes their stadium sucks, and yes their uniforms suck. 

But you know.

Um.

Potato Salad.

Proudly dispensing unbridled arrogance since 1983.

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scarletgray's picture

whats the story behind cooler poopers?  

JDK

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Neutz's picture

Im also curious to this. 

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blu.fan's picture

EDIT:  This is not trolling. You asked the question. Not making any editorial comments on this.

Columbus Dispatch, Sept. 9, 2009:

For those who arrive on campus early, will there be enough toilets?

Ohio State hopes so and says it has learned its lesson from big matchups such as the Texas game in 2005, in which cleanup crews found several soiled shorts and a few coolers filled with poop.

“You either deal with the problem up front, or you deal with it later when it’s ugly,” said Kelley-Snoke.

LINK:  https://www.dispatch.com/article/20090910/NEWS/309109617

EDIT 2:  Google is your friend.

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mathandler1's picture

I dont think he is going anywhere. If it wasnt for bad calls they would not have lost any games since he was there. lol.

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hooverbad112's picture

He's definitely not getting fired. He could leave for the NFL finally, but probably not.

All offseason, I was very gung-ho to everyone I knew saying that they absolutely had to fire Harbaugh if he lost at home to a first-year OSU coach -- and after the Wisconsin loss it looked like it was very likely an OSU loss would be the end, but they've done what they've had to do this last month and it has more than saved his job. The wins over Notre Dame and MSU were big, particularly because they were convincing. And they've in general looked like a more competent team rather than in the past when they've looked more like just hovering above total disaster.

That said, I think Harbaugh is an average college football coach, at best. His recruiting has helped them, sure. Gattis seems to be making a positive mark and Brown has the defense locked down as usual, but all the evidence points to them being good in spite of Harbaugh. If they have a serviceable quarterback these past few years they beat Ohio State and win the conference at least once or twice, but their QB play has been so terrible it has cost them everything. Meanwhile, that's supposed to be the one thing Harbaugh delivers on. Combine that with some terrible in-game decision-making and lazy game-planning in big games, and I really don't think he's good enough anymore to lead a major program.

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Zonabuck's picture

Gattis seems to be making a positive mark and Brown has the defense locked down as usual, but all the evidence points to them being good in spite of Harbaugh.

This is no different than any other year. They overwhelm teams with inferior talent, then have no next gear when they play against better teams. The only difference this year is Gattis struggled for a while against lesser teams before he started getting some traction. Even still, it hasn’t been a balanced offense. I think we’ll see Gattis is closer to Locksley than not this weekend, and he suffers from not having the greater talent edge. 

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Buckeye Chuck's picture

They would have to be utterly embarrassed on Saturday for this to even come up as a possibility, IMO. One thing you have to say about the weasels is that they're playing their best ball right now, and that has not been the case often for Michigan in recent years (even the 2016 team had lost its most recent road game coming into The Game).

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

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blu.fan's picture

I don't think Harbaugh gets fired, but a lot depends on the game. Here are some possibilities.

  • OSU slaughters Michigan. That'd be bad for Harbaugh.
  • OSU wins by about the spread. It would be what it would be.
  • OSU wins by a field goal or less. That'd be a win for Harbaugh.
  • OSU loses. That'd be a lifetime contract.
  • OSU loses big. That'd be inconceivable.

I'm going with OSU winning by about the spread. If they barely win, or lose, that'd be good for Harbaugh.

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Buckeyejohn's picture

I largely agree. He is back next year no matter what. He lost two games but the late rally gives him enough momentum to avoid the hot seat. Ultimately, the issue is that they don’t have a better option. Harbaugh May disappoint on a yearly basis but he still finds a way to go 10-2 or 9-3 every year. He disappoints but he doesn’t embarrass. He is consistently solid even if he doesn’t win the big one. Most importantly, he keeps the stadium full and revenue coming. He leaves Michigan in a gray area because he is just good enough to the point where you can’t risk firing him and hiring the next Hoke. He will have to produce a 7-5 season before they considering moving on. 

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Buckeye_bob's picture

They can’t afford to buy him out and can’t afford to keep him!
Great to be a Buckeye

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