I gotta say, it’s not every day you see a tweet like this one.
It’s only a matter of time before Harbaugh schedules a camp in Tehran, right?
With a résumé like this — “Jim Harbaugh has never won a Big Ten title and hasn’t defeated Ohio State since becoming Michigan’s football coach in 2015.” — it’s easy to understand why Michigan’s AD wants Harbaugh at the school for life.
And when you’re making $7 million a year working for a guy who’s that easy to please, you’d have to be nuts to leave, right?
During a question-and-answer session with those in attendance Thursday at the SeaGate Centre for the “Access for Justice” awards dinner, Harbaugh hinted that paying players might not work.
“Four years of playing high school football, I don’t think anybody’s looked back on that and said they wish they hadn’t played,” Harbaugh said. “But now you take all those people who played all four years of high school football, I believe the percentage is 1 percent of them will go on to play college football.
“And then all of the players that play college football, I think again the percentage is actually 1 percent that will actually play in an NFL game.”
Where is Harbaugh going with all this? He’s trying to push the idea that college athletes should focus on their education, first and foremost.
That means obtaining a degree at a four-year school, or a two-year school, the military, or even a trade school.
“Something after high school is a must these days,” Harbaugh said. “Really, that education is what’s the most valuable and what’s the most important. Sometimes, somebody thinks what’s good for them and what they need are two different things.”
But here’s where Harbaugh gets serious on the matter, questioning whether paying players a salary would really work. Say a player receivers a $65,000 athletic scholarship, he says, and then a school tacks on a $30,000 or $40,000 salary.
What happens when it comes time to pay taxes?
“I don’t know if anybody’s asked this question, but does the scholarship then become a taxable benefit?,” Harbaugh said. “Is the government going to look at that and say, ‘OK, now you owe us 40 percent in taxes?’ You may now have to pay more money than you actually make in the salary with taxes.
“No, I don’t think (they should get paid).”
Mind you, big Jim has no intention of getting an actual answer here. He’s just asking so he can warn his players if they’re not careful, they could wind up writing a check for the privilege of playing for him. That’s some especially ripe bullshit there. Almost makes me wish Corch would come out and say if that ever were to happen, Ohio State would pay their kids enough to cover the loss… which, of course, is just where things would start.
In the meantime, kids, get that valuable degree. At least as long as it’s in a program that doesn’t take too much focus off your football work. Oh, and remember to make enough of a contribution on the field so that you don’t get to the point you have to seek a transfer — preferably to a school where Harbaugh doesn’t object to your enrollment.
He’s a real prince.
You guys know my position on player transfers — the current rules are too restrictive and cater to coaches’ sense of control — but I’ve got to tell you after watching the farce of Shea Patterson’s transfer from Ole Miss to Michigan, there’s a part of me ready to declare a pox on all their houses.
Remember, this all started with Patterson and his lawyer, who has an enormous hard-on for Ole Miss, screaming about how the school needed to man up and let Patterson transfer because everyone lied to him. And when I say screaming, I mean finding receptive idiots in the national media to share their message of perfidy.
Shockingly, Ole Miss had no wish to accommodate the duo’s desire/demand that it admit to a pattern of deception, while not really having a dog in the hunt for where the kid plays this season. And why should it, anyway? No matter what, he’s not suiting up in Oxford.
So, there’s one school that wants a quarterback and another which just wants the quarterback and his legal entourage to go away. The solution seems simple enough that even two athletic directors could figure it out.
The NCAA decided Friday to waive in Patterson’s case its normal rule that requires non-graduated transfers to sit out a year before returning to the playing field. Michigan and Ole Miss said in an announcement Friday that the two athletic departments worked together during the past week to create a waiver request that they both agreed was accurate and one that took advantage of recently adapted NCAA rules to allow Patterson to get on the field this fall…
The new waiver, which used an NCAA amendment passed earlier this month that takes a player’s academic standing into account when applying to play immediately, put to rest Ole Miss’ previous objections to Patterson’s reasons for transferring.
“Both schools are ready to move forward and appreciate the assistance of the NCAA staff in bringing this matter to a resolution,” the two athletic departments said in a joint statement. “While the process has been complex at times, the solution was simple — two flagship universities and the NCAA staff working together with a focus on student-athlete well-being.”
Ole Miss athletic director Ross Bjork said he reached out to Michigan officials last week to try to work out a resolution regarding Patterson’s eligibility.
“Our biggest thing was we wanted to work with Michigan directly,” Bjork said. “We were able to do that and reach a resolution. We’ve admitted all along that our program has gone through some challenges. While Shea was here, we had a coaching change in July. If that impacted his well-being and he didn’t want to be here, we wish him the best and didn’t want to stand in the way of it.”
In other words, quit letting the lawyer try to score points and find a work-around that meets the schools’ goals. Success! Meanwhile, with the mission accomplished, Patterson admits the obvious.
In this case, Michigan benefitted from Patterson deciding that he did not want to play at his school (University of Mississippi) anymore because of football program probation violations. Ole Miss, in the wake of an NCAA investigation into booster-involved recruiting, faces a post-season bowl ban for a second straight in 2018, preventing it from being eligible for a spot in the playoff.
And Patterson, along with not wanting to sit out a year, admitted on Saturday that played into his decision to leave Ole Miss.
“If a university’s football program situation changes drastically, kind of like mine did with the bowl ban and two different coaching staffs, that’s obviously not the situation that I wanted to be in originally,” Patterson said.
“Players should get an opportunity leave that situation. That wasn’t what they thought they were getting themselves into.”
Well, yeah. Might have been better to have said so from the beginning, son.
Now that the hay is in the barn, Jim Harbaugh has some thoughts about transfers, and they’re about what you’d might expect coming from a football head coach.
Now, in the wake of long, drawn-out process with the NCAA over quarterback Shea Patterson’s eligibility in 2018, the Michigan football coach has some ideas to help fix the college-football transfer debate.
“There’s got to be something,” Harbaugh said Saturday during a football clinic in Paris. “Something. Maybe the school pays back the other school? Ya know?
“Say a school like Michigan gets a player from Eastern Michigan or Central Michigan — maybe you’ve got to pay the scholarship back? Or transfers — maybe you’ve got to pay the scholarship back?”
… To be clear here, Harbaugh isn’t advocating for a change in policy. Just extra burden on the team accepting a transfer from another school.
“Just so there doesn’t become free agency in college football,” Harbaugh said. “That’s the thing I would worry about. But I think scholarships should count as two, or pay back the other school for the money that they have invested, potentially.”
Free agency for players! Heaven forbid.
In December, though, Harbaugh’s actions somewhat contradicted his words. Despite college football free agency being a concern and players fighting through the adversity being his desire, reports surfaced shortly after Patterson, safety Deontay Anderson and other players were granted permission to transfer that a Michigan plane landed in Oxford, Miss., and that the fourth-year coach of the Wolverines took some players to IHOP.
Hypocrites gonna hypocrite.
Harbaugh’s suggestion, of course, if it came into being, would only serve to benefit the wealthy, which would be more than willing to hand out a little money to smooth the way to boosting their rosters. Also, of course, none of the funding would wind up in the players’ pockets. That’s got all the makings of a win-win for big Jim, who, by the way, is making a cool $9 million a year.
Sounds like he and Patterson are made for each other.
Man, Shea Patterson and his lawyer are working the media hard. Dennis Dodd reveals the contents of a nine-page letter Patterson wrote the NCAA in an attempt to justify being allowed to play immediately at his new home that begins, “I’m not going to hold anything back …”
I’m trying to feel the righteous indignation here, but my chuckling over this gem keeps getting in the way:
In his filing, Patterson said he found “a trustworthy, high-caliber coach” with “values, integrity and leadership qualities” in Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh.
“It doesn’t seem fair to me that the only thing standing in the way of Coach Freeze making $5 million a year at another school was the discovery that he wasn’t the trustworthy, straight-laced role model that he claimed to be,” Patterson states.
Bless your heart, Shea. It just now dawned on you that a college football coach isn’t always 100% straight with others?
The Freeze fallout continues apace.
SEC Michigan speed, baybee! And Harbaugh didn’t even have to set up a recruiting camp down South to get a top-flight quarterback.
You know Jim Delany’s chest is bursting with pride right now.