Sunday, 20 October, 2019

Did Jim Harbaugh take a shot at Urban Meyer?

Jim Harbaugh and Urban Meyer Enlarge Image Jim Harbaugh and Urban Meyer Getty Images
Shannon Reynolds | 20 July, 2019, 05:36

MI coach Jim Harbaugh took a dig Thursday at former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer, who retired last season in the wake of a scandal involving domestic violence allegations against a former assistant. "A really phenomenal record everywhere he's been", Harbaugh said. "Also, controversy follows everywhere he's been".

But he has to be content with the departure of Urban Meyer who had his number - and Michigan's in general - with four straight victories over Harbaugh's Wolverines. I think you'll find that right now Ohio State is the only team that has a better record than us, has a better conference record than us, has the better overall head-to-head matchup with us. At Florida, he won a pair of NCAA Titles posting a 65-16 record.

That is accurate. Meyer was suspended for the Buckeyes' first three games of the 2018 season while the Big Ten school investigated domestic violence claims against former assistant coach Zach Smith.

Speaking with Tim Kawakami on the eve of the Big Ten's Media Days on The Athletic's Podcast "The TK Show," Harbaugh gave praise to Meyer on his college coaching career - Meyer went 4-0 against Harbaugh including last year's 62-39 demolition of the Wolverines - then tossed in a shot. Meyer-the man who spent last fall talking himself in circles until most fans were too dizzy to realize everything he'd ignored, who saw 31 of his players arrested in six years at Florida, 10 of them charged with felonies. "It's things that many of you all understand and have written about".

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Controversy or not, it's hardly surprising that universities were willing to embrace the controversy that did surround Meyer.

Sure, Harbaugh didn't need to say what he did.

What does cheapen his take is his further treatment of the subject of Meyer-or rather, the coach's absence. Ryan Day replaced Meyer in the offseason. So if Harbaugh is going to style himself as a truth-teller, that should extend further than just pointing out the easy critiques.

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