Prodigal son of Michigan returns

Brandon Walker and Troy Frank

On Dec. 30, 2014, Jim Harbaugh strutted out into the middle of the Crisler Center to be welcomed heavily by thousands of screaming Michigan fans. Just three years prior, he made the Detroit Lions’ coach yell and chase after him in anger. Why are so many eager for this man’s arrival? The team in Ann Arbor is in complete shambles after the two previous coaches, Richard Rodriguez and Brady Hoke, failed to keep winning the identity.

Harbaugh is no slouch when it comes to coaching. In fact, he was a top market coach when he left the San Fransisco 49ers. In college, as the coach of San Diego University and Stanford University from 2004-2010, Harbaugh has a record of 58 wins and 27 losses. In those seven years, he’s won in demanding fashion and produced star players such as Richard Sherman and Andrew Luck.

After his time with the Stanford Cardinal, he moved to the big leagues where he coached the 49ers from 2011-2014. His four years on the team left them with their best seasons in over a decade. Before he joined, they had a 6-10 record. His arrival brought them a 13-3 record. That put everybody in the NFL on notice that he was the man to beat. Harbaugh left the NFL with a 49-19-1 record. That’s more wins than the previous eight 49ers seasons combined.

The reason behind going to coach at Michigan was a mix of personal preference and peer pressure. Harbaugh was a quarterback for Michigan in the 1980s and was talked into going by family and friends.

Harbaugh will bring many talented coaches to the Big House alongside himself. Offensive coordinator, Tim Drevno, comes from USC where he was the offensive line coach. The reason Harbaugh chose him was because of coaching experience and prior knowledge of Drevno after he worked under Harbaugh for three years. Drevno however has only been the offensive coordinator for three years of his career at San Diego.

The defensive coordinator definitely has the stats to stack his resume. D.J. Durkin recently came from this past year’s Florida Gators where his defense ranked fifth in least amount of yards per play. He also finished top ten in least amount of rushing and passing yards per attempt.

Everything surrounding Harbaugh’s arrival is well deserved as he is a highly respected coach going to a conference ruled by two dominant coaches in their own right, Urban Meyer and Mark Dantonio. The dominating story will be the triple rivalry between the coaches and the historic past they now share.

Time will come when we see him in action, but for now all we can do as football fans is keep an eye out for Ann Arbor in years to come.