You’re on a rollercoaster that has various twists and turns, and it doesn’t seem to be ending soon. Although you’re sick to your stomach, you refuse to get off the ride. Brady Hoke and his coaching staff were let go one week ago, much to the satisfaction of Michigan fans and to the surprise of no one. Since then, everyone has been on a treacherous rollercoaster ride of emotions.
The number one target for Michigan is Jim Harbaugh. In what seems to be a perfect movie in the making, Harbaugh could return home and fix his beloved alma mater. A week into the search, the only sure thing is that Michigan interim athletic director Jim Hackett is targeting Harbaugh. Everything else is pure speculation, and that speculation is driving Michigan fans to insanity. Fans are overreacting to every little tidbit of “information” out there. Just look at social media or listen to radio stations for evidence of that.
In the soap opera that is the Michigan coaching search, there have been more plot twists than one can count. There have been numerous reports regarding Harbaugh and most of them are contradicting. There are several sources at the college level claiming that he would be interested in coaching in Ann Arbor, but several NFL sources are exclaiming he’s not.
A recent report by NFL insider Ian Rapoport stated that Michigan had a meeting with Harbaugh, but they left convinced he wanted to stay in the NFL. Michigan insider Sam Webb denied that report and stated that Harbaugh odds are still at 50/50.
Speaking of odds, Vegas has also played a part in this saga. Bets were being placed heavily on Harbaugh to Michigan, so much so that the betting was suspended. Since then, the betting has been re-opened, but the numbers have varied. Another dimension to the Harbaugh saga is that the San Francisco 49ers continue their struggles, which seems to favor the Michigan timeline. Also of note is that Harbaugh has been receiving more questions about his job as each day passes. He has yet to directly say yes or no regarding Michigan, which gives fans of the maize and blue hope. This whirlwind of information and speculation has been enough for a lifetime, but sadly it has only been a week, and this has only been the Harbaugh related confusion.
Though fans and alumni are clamoring for Harbaugh, it’s not a done deal. Not even close. Because of that, Michigan has to look elsewhere in case they don’t land their man. Plenty of rumors have been circulating regarding names linked to this opening. We’ve heard everything from Les Miles to Jim L. Mora to Sean Payton and unfortunately even Greg Schiano, among many more. It seems there are new names in the Michigan coaching search every day. The speculation is taking Michigan fans from the highest of the highs to the lowest of the lows five times over.
Sam Webb has reported that Michigan intends to have a coach by Jan. 7 at the latest. These next few weeks, you will see a steady flow of stories regarding the head coaching position, but don’t take them to heart. It’s all speculation at this point. Until Harbaugh says yes or no directly, or you hear something regarding a different coach from Hackett, don’t panic and don’t get too happy. Hackett is taking his time and trying to be deliberate with this hire, as he should be. The last search took six days, and look what that resulted in.
The media will run these stories because it’s their job to put stories out there. This rollercoaster ride will continue for at least four more weeks. It’s been a doozy of a ride and frankly you should be exhausted by now. This process has been nerve-wracking and maddening, but it’s important to get it right this time. As a loyal fan, it’s fine to keep an eye on the situation, but you’d be better served taking everything with a grain of salt. Be sure to not take any report too seriously. For the sake of your health and sanity, get off the rollercoaster ride and stay with the rest of us on level ground while we patiently wait for a few more weeks.
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