Fox Sports analyst Joel Klatt has been one of the staunchest defenders of Jim Harbaugh and the Michigan Wolverines and he is going public once again with his thoughts on the state of the program and its leadership structure.
Klatt says that outside of Ohio State, people need to take into consideration the total body of work of what he has been able to do in Ann Arbor.
“He knows what the truth is, and I’ve talked to him about it,” Klatt said. “Jim has done an unbelievable job. In 2014 folks, and this is not... the criticism he gets is deserved when it comes to Ohio State only. Outside of that, you have to understand what he’s done. He’s taken a team that in 2014 was 5-7. They missed a bowl game for only the third time in their history! History meaning as soon as the Big Ten allowed teams to go to other bowls other than the Rose Bowl. He took over a 5-7 team. Ohio State won the national championship (that) year. 2014, folks. So, that’s what he walked into.
“What I bristle at is this fact that, ‘Well, he’s gotta beat Ohio State!’ The margin right now is so big between those two programs from what he took over and inherited to where he’s trying to get. And this is not the year to evaluate Jim Harbaugh based off what he does against Ohio State. Ohio State is the best team I’ve ever covered in the booth. I have never covered a better team than this Ohio State in the booth. This is the wrong year to evaluate Jim Harbaugh based off what he does against this particular Buckeye team.”
"Ohio State is the best team I've ever covered in the booth... This is the wrong year to evaluate Jim Harbaugh based on he does against that particular Buckeye team." — @joelklatt pic.twitter.com/oaEyIQTZSD— FOX Sports (@FOXSports) December 4, 2019
That said, he is not free from criticism for the way his team has performed in The Game the last few years, namely last weekend.
“Here is the one criticism I would give Michigan: they play too undisciplined when they get into those matchups against Ohio State,” Klatt said. “You can’t fumble, you can’t jump offside.”
Big Ten Awards handed out for offense
The rest of the Big Ten Awards were given out on Wednesday and a pair of Wolverines earned first-team honors with left tackle Jon Runyan Jr. and left guard Ben Bredeson coming away with hardware for their 2019 performances.
Here are the rest of the Michigan players who made the cut:
- C Cesar Ruiz – second-team (coaches), third-team (media)
- QB Shea Patterson – third-team (coaches and media)
- RG Michael Onwenu – third-team (coaches)
- RB Zach Charbonnet – third-team (media)
These Wolverines were named honorable mentions:
- RB Zach Charbonnet (coaches)
- RB Hassan Haskins (coaches and media)
- WR Ronnie Bell (media)
- WR Nico Collins (coaches and media)
- WR Donovan Peoples-Jones (media)
- TE Nick Eubanks (coaches and media)
- TE Sean McKeon (coaches and media)
- RT Jalen Mayfield (coaches)
- RG Michael Onwenu (media)
Central Michigan radio voice dies in car accident
Central Michigan University football and basketball play-by-play voice Don Chiodo passed away on Wednesday night after being involved in a car crash near Alma, Michigan. Chiodo had worked the last 10 years for the Chippewa Sports Network and was the lone media member this season to pick CMU (who was 1-11 last season) to win the MAC Championship, which they will play in on Saturday afternoon in Detroit against Miami (OH).
We have a handful of contributors here at Maize n Brew that went to CMU (myself included) and have had several others pass through here over the years. I never worked with Don, but many friends and colleagues of mine have and I did cross paths with him a handful of times as a student. He was an incredibly sweet guy who wore his school colors proudly. Our thoughts are with his family and those affected during this difficult time.
- USC announced on Wednesday that it will be retaining head coach Clay Helton through the 2020 season.
- Baylor’s Matt Rhule was named Big 12 Coach of the Year on Wednesday. The Bears will play for a conference title on Saturday and finished the regular season 11-1.
- Have you ever wanted to be a head football coach? Now is your chance, as the UNLV job has been posted to the job board on Indeed.