Jim Harbaugh on Urban Meyer: ‘Controversy Follows Everywhere He’s Been’

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh

Even before 2019 Big Ten Media Days kicked off in Chicago, Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh is at the center of attention.

Harbaugh appeared on “The TK Show” podcast with Bay Area-based sportswriter Tim Kawakami, and fired a shot at former Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer.

“Urban Meyer’s had a winning record. Really phenomenal record everywhere he’s been. But also, controversy follows everywhere he’s been,” Harbaugh said.

He later expanded on the natural comparisons between Michigan and Ohio State:

“You welcome the accountability that all you can be judged on is your record,” Harbaugh said. “What your record is overall? What your record is within your conference and what your record is head-to-head matchups with the other teams you play?

“I think you find right now that Ohio State is the only team that has a better record than us, has a better conference record than us and has a better overall head-to-head matchup with us.”

Meyer, of course, retired from Ohio State following a turbulent 2018 season. And his Florida program was riddled with off-field issues during the end of his tenure there as well.

But it’s also worth noting that his exits from Utah and Bowling Green were mostly drama-free, and Harbaugh’s tenure in Ann Arbor hasn’t exactly been spotless, either.

The more surprising element of the story is just that Harbaugh said it.

It’s rare for coaches to publicly bad-mouth another program or coach.

Think about how often you’ve head coaches deflect a question about another team some variant of “we’re just worried about our program.” Or “we have great respect for our rivals.” Or “we’re just focused on getting better this season.”

They’re cliches, but that’s just because everyone says them.

Harbaugh’s interviews aren’t generally a waterfall of interesting quotes, either. He seems to approach every press conference with the sole intent of saying the fewest interesting words possible.

To publicly go right after a rival coach is not only out of character for Harbaugh, but for coaches on the whole.

Was it Harbaugh trying to deflect or spin his program’s on-field failures against its biggest rival?

Was it simply frustration from years of season-ending losses boiling over?

That’s impossible to know. But it seems very unlikely that it wasn’t planned for one reason or another.

Harbaugh is scheduled to speak Friday at Big Ten Media Days. He’ll get a chance to explain in more detail then.

11 Responses

  1. When JimHarbaugh was at Stanford University I remember him saying something very derogatory about the academics of t.t.u.n. I guess he forgot all about that controversy.

  2. Wow! Nobody gonna touch that one, and imagine the Urban, Day, etc will take the high road and just let this idiocy resonate. Maybe we all should consider that Khaki is just really a dumb-**s, and then it just makes sense. Easier to toss dirt than have folks focus on…like football when your rival has beaten you like a rented mule year after year after…!
    Great for The Game though!

  3. Hairball is an inane moronic and ridiculously stupid. Stupidity is my biggest pet peeve. Ignorance I can handle but stupidity is unacceptable. He has a total lack of common sense. I am sure his parents are
    “Very Proud of his Stupidity and his ability to say utterly stupid to things.
    What a “Dumb Ass”!!!

  4. Sound and fury, signifying nothing…in the late 90s idiot Harbaugh punched Jim Kelly, before being canned by the Colts. 2003 he got a DUI…then there’s the controversy over his exit at 49ers…and of course his decision to retain criminals like Grant Perry on his current team. Heal thyself you idiot- and win a meaningful game once in awhile.

    1. Lmao that’s right! He broke his hand on Jim Kelly’s face!?

    2. Hey don’t forget the postgame butt-swat brawl between him and the Lions head coach (think it was Jim Schwartz)?

  5. harbaugh is so clueless and such a jacka$$. He fits the arrogance of meechigan perfectly.

    1. Harbaugh is more clueless than arrogant. True arrogance demands that the person actually be excellent at something before they start the boasting- Jimmy has skipped that part. In truth, he sounds like nothing more than one of their fans.

  6. Hairball is full of himself. I’ll take 7-0 against scUM any day.

  7. It is interesting to note that Jimmy Harbaugh shoots his mouth off and yet…has not won anything. I am also upset that he wants to compare Michigan to Ohio State in terms of doing the right thing. As a graduate of Ohio State as well as having a son currently at OSU, it sickens me that someone has to rip on Ohio State without knowing all the information and circumstances. Harbaugh needs to focus on his school and its program. When you are losing like he is, it is easy to blame, complain, and defend your stance to make you appear better than the other guy. Oh and by the way…. two former Michigan coaches are now on the Ohio State staff. If Harbaugh was such a great guy and coach, they would have stayed. Don’t give me the fact that Ohio State is paying them more. Michigan has money too. I have never liked Jim Harbaugh or the arrogance of Michigan. They are who they are…just arrogant talkers who have not won a conference title since 2004. Ohio State beat them that year 37-21. Go Bucks…Beat the Blue again!

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