“It’s good to hope,” Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh said in April.
While the Big Ten may have cancelled the fall football season, hope is a necessity for Michigan to start the days ahead.
Michigan players and staff are upset and frustrated by the Big Ten’s decision to cancel the season, but there isn’t much time to reflect on the disappointment. Their eyes are on staying prepared to they’re ready for their next opportunity.
The day the season was cancelled the team still had practice, and Harbaugh had a message for the team. “Coach Harbaugh, he spoke with us the day of the announcement being made that the season was being canceled in the fall,” defensive back Hunter Reynolds said. “Within a matter of hours and days, the coaching staff put together a real comprehensive plan that we feel like will put us in the best position possible, so whenever the season does start, we’re going to be prepared.”
Big Ten teams are allowed to continuing practicing for the foreseeable future. The rule states that there can be no more than 20 hours per week of workouts, meetings, and other activities. And Michigan will be looking to utilize their time together in a way that keeps them sharp, mentally and physically.
“Hope and going to prepare,” Harbaugh said months ago, but the message remains the same today. “I’m not going to give it one thought that it’s not going to happen. It’s like being a backup quarterback – it’s better to be prepared and not have the opportunity, than to not prepare and then your chance comes and your opportunity comes, and you’re not prepared to do it.”
It’s hard-telling precisely what month the Big Ten’s football season will start, but some teams are going to leapfrog others in their preparation due to not taking the foot off the gas. “I think playing two seasons in one calendar year is certainly something that’s never been done before,” Reynolds said. “But I think if we start planning for it now, we actually start including players in the conversation in how to move forward, I think that everyone can come to an agreement on the best step to move forward.”