Things have gotten personal between radio host Jim Rome and Jim Harbaugh. After leaving his Monday media session ten minutes in, Harbaugh was asked three follow up questions about suspended players after he said things would be handled internally. Harbaugh chose to say thank you and end the session, walking off. Rome wasn’t the only person in the media who took shots at Harbaugh for this, but his comments were by far the most personal.
"With that a walk off, with that line of questioning. That is not an unfair question. What that is a jerk move by the coach. That is not an unfair question or an unfair line of questioning. Like coach, you have multiple players unaccounted for, nobody knows where they are or what happened to them. You know why they want a second question, a third question Jim? Because you didn’t answer the first question. If you answered the first question, there would be no need for a second question, a third question a fourth question ... Maybe you forgot over the summer that it’s their job to cover your team, not ask you what your favorite Drake album is," Rome said. "Just like they’re not there to write another tired story about your latest throwback jersey, or your Walmart khakis, or your latest shirtless photo from satellite camp, or another crackback on the SEC. They’re not on your staff, they do not work for the university. You preside over an alleged national power. If you suspend guys, reporters are going to ask you about it. They’re just doing their job, so you should do yours and answer the question. If anybody thought this was going to be a kinder, gentler Harbaugh since he went home to Ann Arbor to rescue the football program, make no mistake, it’s the same exact guy. Nothing’s changed. Same guy. Same insanely intense dude that got run from Frisco, because he was miserable. He runs way too hot and he was wearing people out. Don’t get it twisted now. Great coach, unbelievable coach, I’m sure he’ll do a great job there. But when you have a coach who wins as he wins and nobody is ever sorry to see him leave, that tells you a little something about that guy. So with that 10-win season in the rear view, God help anybody who asks him who his starting quarterback is gonna to be. Or how come he can’t beat Urban Meyer, or when he’s going to beat Urban Meyer, or why he pulled a scholarship from a recruit. Good luck with any of that. Michigan fans will love this guy for winning. They’ll love him even more if he gets around to beating Michigan State, and even more than that, if he can finally find a way to get over Ohio State. But anybody who thinks that Harbaugh is wired to grow old in that job is kidding themselves. Enjoy it while it lasts, because even though it’s his alma mater, it probably won’t. This cat runs way too hot. If he can’t get through an August press session, media session, when they’re asking him about guys that are not in a team photo, this guy’s not going to last long.”
Rome himself has been at the center of many a controversy in his day, from NBA commissioner David Stern asking him if he still beats his wife, to him calling people in marching bands all dorks..
Harbaugh fired back with a tweet of something else that happened in Rome’s past:
Do you remember the provocateur who went personal with another Big 10 QB and had the tables turned on him? #déjàvu https://t.co/0GAciV74tQ— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) August 17, 2016
Los Angeles Rams quarterback, Jim Everett, didn’t take too kindly to being called Chris Everett repeatedly by Rome, which was a way of Rome questioning Everett’s toughness. Chris Evert was a female tennis star at the time, and Rome used this to antagonize, but as you can see it ends with Rome on the floor. The fact Harbaugh said Deja Vu in his tweet.. my advice to Rome is something Ron Burgundy would say to Brick Tamland.. “You may want to lay low for awhile.”
Rome was not done, of course. After Harbaugh’s tweet he had to get what he perceived to be the last word in.
Roasted! Damn, you got me good. Like 42-13 good. https://t.co/qAkYtqYKiB— Jim Rome (@jimrome) August 17, 2016
Rome is referring to last years loss against Ohio State. But to be fair, Harbaugh got him like NFC Championship winning good.
Could Rome have a valid point in the midst of his ramble? You can decide. I would say most of what he said was too personal and without basis. For example, he’s miserable? Harbaugh has been allowed a lot of control at Michigan. With it he’s built a cohesive staff that is like-minded. They mesh well. Harbaugh has had an off-season in which he’s done a rap video, been in golf tournaments, taught football at satelite camps to thousands of kids, has a child on the way, and so on. When it comes to how good this Michigan team could be this year and become in years ahead, how could that make a man miserable? Michigan will continue to have top 5 recruiting classes, and will now be in the mix to be in the College Football Playoff. If that’s miserable, sign me up. If anyone sounds bitter it is Rome, whom once had shows on both ESPN and HBO, now the only time he’s heard from is when he stirs the pot on the radio.
Our own Anthony Broome summed this fiasco up best on Twitter:
Harbaugh v Rome pic.twitter.com/3A2G18xZkS— Anthony Broome (@anthonytbroome) August 17, 2016