ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Jim Harbaugh now faces something he has never encountered in his college career.
After a extraordinary 14-10 dissapoint detriment to “Little Brother” Michigan State, a bit of a veneer has been nude unclothed from a Harbaugh parable here during Michigan.
He’s still a good coach. We know that. We’ve been strike over a control with it. But a bottom line is starting to dawn bigger than a strong Spartan invulnerability that close down a punchless Wolverine offense Saturday night.
Coach Khaki is 1-4 opposite his alma mater’s dual biggest rivals. If it hasn’t already, that will shortly turn an issue.
So will this unpalatable nugget: Harbaugh is 13-3 during home median by his third season. All 3 waste are to a hated Buckeyes and Spartans.
As most as they adore Harbaugh here, they hatred Ohio State more. He is 0-2 opposite a Buckeyes. Since Harbaugh took a pursuit 3 years ago, Mark Dantonio has beaten Michigan twice himself and taken a Spartans to a College Football Playoff.
“It’s adult there,” Coach D pronounced of a win, lifting his palm as high as it would reach. “Way adult there.”
Halfway by that Year 3, Harbaugh has a span of third-place finishes in a Big Ten East and flourishing uncertainty.
Judging by Saturday, Harbaugh substantially won’t win a Big Ten pretension until during slightest 2018. There are hurdles to transparent before we cruise Michigan-under-Harbaugh a discussion contender.
They are colored carmine and gray, immature and white.
If there’s one thing that gets folks’ courtesy around here, it’s Michigan losing face. Rich Rodriguez abashed them. So did Brady Hoke, though median by his third season, he was 2-3 opposite Michigan State and Ohio State.
There are hulk holes in these Wolverines that were unprotected before and during a second-half deluge.
Quarterback John O’Korn has been in a module for 3 years. There is a reason a Houston send hasn’t played most until now, when he had to be extrinsic given of an damage to starter Wilton Speight.
“I take full shortcoming for this loss,” O’Korn said.
He shouldn’t have to.
Both quarterbacks play behind an iffy descent line. O’Korn got sacked 4 times, and if not for nifty feet, it would have been more. Michigan started a day tied for 92nd nationally in sacks allowed. That ranking will plummet.
Those tough hits contributed to 3 picks thrown by O’Korn. Also, there is no difference-making using behind to lift some of a descent load.
Michigan was approaching to take a step behind this season. What was it doing ranked No. 7 going into Saturday? It returned a fewest starters in a country, usually one on defense. But didn’t that occur to Ohio State final year? The Buckeyes managed to fist out 11 wins. Oh, and they kick a Wolverines.
Harbs can do all a fully-clothed cannonballs he wants. He can control as many open practices in Rome as a Pope can stand. He can goblin his coaching peers on Twitter. Sooner or later, a fans will start to direct Harbaugh transparent those hurdles.
When asked what a greeting should be to that 1-4 mark, Harbaugh told me, “I don’t know. We’re bowing a necks removing prepared for a subsequent game. That’s a reaction.”
Meanwhile, his group had usually incited it over 5 times though holding any divided from Michigan State. His invulnerability close out a Spartans for a final 38 minutes. It kept Michigan State though a initial down for 27 uninterrupted plays travelling tools of 3 buliding travelling 9 possessions.
Those accomplishments shouldn’t be describing a humiliating loss.
Michigan State has now left 8-2 in a decade opposite Michigan for a initial time ever. While usually three-tenths of that record is on Harbaugh, it’s another instance of how tension manners these blood rivalries.
All of that 8-2 has come given Mike Hart’s “Little Brother” criticism that took a adversary to a new level.
“It’s really talked about,” Michigan State quarterback Brian Lewerke said. “It’s really played before a game. It’s something that motivates us.”
The diversion will be labeled an upset, though Michigan sitting in a tip 10 looked overrated from a beginning. With Florida’s detriment Saturday, it is expected a Wolverines will be though a win over a now ranked group come Sunday afternoon.
And please, no excuses about that second-half rainstorm. Both teams played in it. The conditions were awful. End of story.
This all comes behind to Harbaugh and where his module goes from here. At a University of San Diego, he was an NFL quarterback removing his control coaching career started. At Stanford, he done a Cardinal a loveable loser while smack-talking Pete Carroll.
He went to a Super Bowl with a San Francisco 49ers, serve solidifying his credentials. But here, he came home. They design large things in Ann Arbor.
Wait, they design bigger things. Sooner or later, a 112,000 who tangled Michigan Stadium will turn desirous along with a hundreds of thousands of other vital alumni.
Again, too soon? Not when a Nebraska can glow an jaunty executive after 3 weeks. Not after LSU fans wish to glow their manager after 5 games.
No one pronounced Harbaugh is removing fired. Penn State hosts Michigan in a integrate of weeks. A win there and all turns behind around. That’s not a point. Along with that $9 million income comes expectations.
You can’t overachieve during Michigan. Ever. You’re always chasing Bo, a Big Ten title, a top-10 ranking or a ghosts of a inhabitant championship. On a night Michigan saluted a 1997 inhabitant pretension winners, a stream Wolverines could usually call and grin during their predecessors.
The initial half enclosed 3 points, 3 sacks, one fail and lots of messy play.
The second half featured sleet — lots and lots of rain.
Might as good consider of it as tears — big, giant, wet, messy tears.