Members of the Maize n Brew staff didn’t have a game to discuss this week, but a few topics were being batted around the Slack room this week. Here’s what’s on our minds on an unscheduled bye week.
We’ve heard a lot of negatives about Jim Harbaugh (understandably and deservedly so) in recent weeks. Name the pros to keeping him around to fix this mess.
Chris Castellani: It would provide great content for our site. Jim Harbaugh is many things, boring is not one of them.
Anthony Broome: He represents the community well, has a key voice in advocating for student-athletes and at least he has shown that Michigan could get on the cusp of achieving greatness. Though, things are very different now than when Michigan was contending under him and it’s continually trending the wrong direction.
Matt Eifert: The main pro to keeping Harbaugh is for the continuity of the program. Despite many fans grumbling about Michigan’s recruiting classes not being on par with Ohio St. and the other blue-bloods, there is still a quite talented recruiting class coming in next year. Losing Harbaugh could lead to losing JJ McCarthy and others. Coaching changes inevitably lead to transition years in recruiting and potential rebuilds. Firing Harbaugh would not prevent a rebuilding phase from occurring which could be slow and painful.
Trevor Woods: The devil’s advocate to the situation would be this is a young team, a team riddled with injuries, and a team that lost two of its best players in Nico Collins and Ambry thomas via opt outs. Then throw a pandemic in on top of it. This is a weird year, weird season. The pros to keeping him around? Recruiting would take a hit in the short term if Harbaugh left, there’s just as good of a chance of him turning things around as there is a new coach being the correct hire and succeeding right out of the gate.
What were your initial thoughts when the game against Maryland was canceled?
Chris Castellani: I wasn’t surprised. I know we make jokes, and I’m not going to act like this season has been remotely fun, but I was disappointed. I want to see them play. I’ve seen enough cancellations this year and while I completely understand and support the decision that was made, it still makes Saturdays a lot less interesting when your team isn’t playing.
Anthony Broome: I don’t like games being canceled, but my hot take is that this week could have been more embarrassing that what is on the schedule next week. Not from a score standpoint, but from Mike Locksey’s offense putting on a show while Josh Gattis, his former peer who spurned an offer from him to go to Michigan, struggled to get his going. I feel like the avoided what may have been another dagger to the ego.
Matt Eifert: Apathy. I read the news, shrugged, and went about my day. While it’s disappointing to miss out on any opportunity to watch Michigan football, it’s hard not to be numb to this season. Whether we beat Maryland or not, it wouldn’t have changed my opinion on the season, the staff, or the future of the program.
Trevor Woods: My initial thought was it really sucks the game was canceled. It’s been a rough season for Michigan, it’s been tough to watch most of the time. But I wanted to see them play, wanted them to go the whole way through without a stoppage. My thoughts coincide with the fact that the team has too many coronavirus cases right now. We have to separate their on field performances with the fact that their health and safety is at stake right now.
Do you want to see the game against Ohio State played? Why or why not?
Chris Castellani: Yes. As heartbreaking as it almost always is (though this year won’t be heartbreaking. We know what we’re getting into.) it’s always a fun game to cover. I want to see this thing through to the end.
Anthony Broome: If the Big Ten can find a way for this game to get played, I hope they can. Even if OSU was to hang the promised 100 on Michigan, The Game gets played. At this point, game reps may be difficult for us to watch, but beneficial for the young guys who get on the field.
Matt Eifert: Of course I want to see The Game played (assuming it is safe to do so). First and foremost, everyone should want the health and safety of the players on both sides to be feasible enough for the game to happen. On the field, I certainly don’t expect Michigan to win or even be competitive, but stranger things have happened (looking at you 1993). The day that either fan base wishes to not play their rival is the day that the rivalry no longer exists.
Trevor Woods: I really want them to get healthy fast so they can play Ohio State. The whole waving the white flag against OSU narrative magnified by Kirk Herbstreit’s foolish comments will become a talking point if Michigan legitimately can’t play due to still having too many cases. Say what you want about Harbaugh, but he’s man enough to show up and have his team play even if impending doom is on the horizon. Hopefully they’ll be healthy enough to head to Columbus and play with some anger, because they have absolutely nothing to lose except the game itself.