If it wasn’t obvious what week it was already, Monday’s press conference at Schembechler Hall left no doubt.
In front of a standing room only crowd of media members from across Michigan and Ohio, Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh answered a gambit of questions about topics relating to The Game, among other topics.
Here are the most noteworthy comments from Monday’s presser:
On Blake Corum’s charity work - “He’s amazing in all ways. He has a larger than life personality and larger than life empathy. Everything he does in quiet ways and example ways. So many things are why we’re such a tight knit football team.”
On how Ohio State shapes up - “I think they’re a really good, proved team. It’s a tremendous team and we’re very grateful to be in this position playing this game — winner takes the (Big Ten) East, winner takes all right there. It’s the kind of situation that gives you the opportunity to display how strong our team is.”
On his “give it six hours” comment post Illinois - “It was actually just a couple hours, actually not even that. By the time I got home, I was watching the Ohio State/Maryland game and so my mind switched over really quick.”
On what he told J.J. McCarthy about making his first start in The Game - “Have at it. It’s pretty cool, especially coming off the game he had – fourth quarter comeback, win in the last minute — that doesn’t happen to quarterbacks that often. So that’s what I tell him, don’t tell him anything more than that. Just have at it.”
On if there’s anything Harbaugh is unsure about headed into Columbus - “I’m always searching to understand just where we’re at and we’re our opponent is, and I’ve been spending the better part of yesterday and today doing that — on film, too, but also I just spend the better part of the morning talking to some of the parents on our team. Like I said, I think you’re gonna find we’re made of the right stuff.”
On the ‘joy and gusto’ this team has had this season - “Yeah — I’d even call them ‘happy warriors.’ Like I said, there’s no need for hate or anxiety or anger, it’s about being grateful for — and it’s Thanksgiving week — but being grateful for this opportunity, these circumstances. Being tested by this opponent at this time.”
On if there’s any danger in hyping themselves up too much given the circumstances - “When you have 11-0 — both teams are 11-0 — I know our 11-0 really doesn’t mean anything now. It’s about going 1-0.”