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Is Commitmas The New Norm For Michigan Football?

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As Michigan pursues bigger fish, will the recruiting season get pushed back?

UNLV v Michigan Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

In Jim Harbaugh’s America, crossing state lines is a classic, like that old 1958 Pontiac Bonneville. It’s one of those rare things that bring the young and the old together: nobody doesn’t love crossin’ those state lines once in a while.

Harbaugh, who we’ve been told doesn’t like recruiting, can recruit in any number of ways and still be successful. He can go for the big fish or win with overlooked, chip-on-the-shoulder types. He can go down south, out west, into Canada, rob the eastern seaboard, stay at home, or dip into Ohio. He’s already getting a jump-start on Australia, and I actually wouldn’t be surprised if he pokes around Europe and Egypt eventually. Anything to get that next great midfielder - um, I mean, scrum half, er, running back, that is.

Still, with the NCAA potentially cracking down on some of Jim Harbaugh’s summer recruiting efforts, there might be a better way to approach recruiting from here on out, and that approach is the exciting one: going for the big fish, laying the ground work in the summer, recruiting slightly too many blue-chips and then closing the deal with the right ones in the month after the Ohio State game. In other words, Commitmas.

The Wolverines are already back, after all, which was the point of some of Harbaugh’s theatrics. Harbaugh will get media attention wherever he goes, including (and especially) volunteering at an Alabama soup kitchen if he feels like it. He is one of the faces of college football, and if he feels like he needs a presence in the south, nobody will be able to stop him from doing so.

For the scrappy, hard-working types that always help to balance out a class, Michigan will be fine. They’ll always be fine in that regard. Harbaugh’s been brilliant at finding diamonds in the rough, underrated types that bring a hard-working, calloused mentality to the whole class.

But when it comes to the stars of the show - those defensive linemen who look destined for the NFL, the jaw-dropping running backs, the college-ready quarterbacks - it’s always nice to sell them a good experience. And combining your college choice with the holidays might be Harbaugh’s best contribution to the recruiting game yet.

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