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Key quotes from Jim Harbaugh’s pre-Ohio State press conference

Jim Harbaugh touched on the team’s preparation for Ohio State, Rick Mnter, and the threat Marvin Harrison Jr. poses.

Syndication: USA TODAY Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK

The week of The Game has finally arrived.

The Michigan Wolverines avoided a scare in College Park on Saturday, defeating the Maryland Terrapins, 31-24. Now, the Wolverines’ sights are on the Ohio State Buckeyes.

On Monday, head coach Jim Harbaugh took the podium to speak on The Game. Here are his key quotes:

  • “It’s all about our preparation for Ohio,” Harbaugh said. “The days, the minutes, the hours, everything leading up to this game. That’s where our focus is. Preparing ourselves and planning, going to practice and then execute. Anything else is irrelevant when you get into this kind of big game week.”
  • Harbaugh spoke about watching the Maryland game on Saturday at his brother, John’s, house: “Great to watch it with him. And what I saw was a great, glorious win. Really happy with the team and good to be around his football mind, too. We accomplished what we went there to do and got the mission done.”
  • Harbaugh spoke about his preparation of his coaching staff through the suspension and leading up to the game: “It’s really a battle-tested team and empowering people. It’s (about) empowering our coaches and empowering our players, and just an amazing job that they’ve done. I just think back over the last five, six weeks, it’s just been like a high-pitched siren. Like a deafening ear-piercing noise and just after a while, (you) start to tolerate it. And then before you know it, just block it out. So it’s stay on course. That’s what our team has done and just keep the priorities straight, which is faith, family and football.”
  • Harbaugh said it was his idea to elevate Rick Minter to interim linebackers coach after firing Chris Partridge last Friday. He had nothing else to add about the news.
  • Harbaugh opined about his team’s moto and resiliency: “It’s like the Ted Lasso show. Believe. What comes out of that is ‘believe,’ and I’m so proud of our team. Despite that noise, our locker room is in one piece. (It’s) like my mom’s bathing suits, I like to see them in one piece. We’ve got that and it’s amazing. And there’s so many lessons to be learned, many life lessons that our young guys are learning at at this age and how the world works. And keeping our priorities straight, faith, family and football. And we’re battle-tested and ready to go and now it’s just all Ohio. This week is all about Ohio. Working really hard to get ready for this game. Using the hours, the minutes, the days to hone our focus, get prepared, play and practice and then go execute the game.”
  • Harbaugh was asked if he would have any staff changes: “We are in position to be in position. That’s what we know. 11-0, they are 11-0, and everything is all focus and preparation on this game as it should be.”
  • Finally, Harbaugh was asked about his thoughts on Ohio State receiver, Marvin Harrison Jr.: “(Marvin Harrison Jr.) reminds me a lot of his dad. Great player. You gotta be covered. You got to slow him down, is probably the better word. Do our best to do that and everything works together. Pass rush faster, the more pressure they can put on the quarterback, the better the coverage is going to be. Same with the coverage — the better the coverage is going to be, then that allows the pass rush to get home. You play as a team, and that team defense is going to be critical. It all works together.”

In all, Harbaugh remained tight-lipped on the outside noise surrounding the program, but does appear to be as focused as ever on beating Ohio State on Saturday.