Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Serenity now, Michigan Fans

National Signing Day starts in a few short hours and it'll be the most anticipated event for Michigan football fans since our shiny new coach got settled in and we realized (after much pinching) that it did happen, he really is ours, and nobody has it better than us.

Most of us replaced our worn out F5 keys after the intense, month-long Harbaugh Watch. After a moderately "refreshing" pace watching the coaching staff come together, F5 will face another real workout as we anticipate the results of that new staff's first signing day. And I hope that whatever the outcome, Wolverine fans don't go off the deep end over the final flips or flops of Harbaugh's decidedly short recruiting season.

I think we've already seen the power of his reputation - and that of his staff - in the recent favorable changes of heart that landed us some top players formerly committed elsewhere, including QB Zach Gentry (Texas),  Grant Perry (Northwestern), and Reuben Jones (Nebraska.) We've also seen that the Harbaugh Effect isn't a seductively intoxicating brew to everyone. Some targets have stuck with their original commitments even after positive discussions with the staff and eye-widening visits to our humble little athletic campus and that, you know, world-class university associated to it. Harbaugh's crew didn't have much time to establish the relationships that coaches normally build years before a top recruit approaches NSD. We'll win some and we'll lose some in this strange, transitional recruiting year. It's a normal progression through an abnormal time. Not the end of the world at all.

What I hate to see as I spend time F5ing my way through a variety of Michigan blogs and Twitter feeds is the number of hair-trigger fans already freaking out and getting down on Harbaugh because a few recruits have said "no thanks" for 2015. I read a comment made by some armchair expert after Chris Williamson chose the Florida Gators. This guy was mad because "we were told Harbaugh could recruit." One month on the job and the man's skills are being questioned by people whose last social media rant was probably posting hateful performance reviews directly to Devin Gardner's Twitter or questioning John Beilein's coaching genius as his young team struggles to find it's way after 2014's early departures and a slew of injuries.

Michigan fans, and I use that term with some doubt, you need to relax now

Harbaugh's 2015 class already has some very good commits and Jimmy will know what to do with both them and the stable of talent Hoke left behind. In my way of thinking, if a kid doesn't want to be here, I don't want him here. Seriously, do you want someone who: 
  • Can't look past the recent state of Michigan football to see the opportunity in front of him to work with the cream of CFB and NFL coaching talent in a legendary program? (No vision)
  • Is mad because Brady Hoke got fired and isn't blown away by getting Jim Harbaugh and his rock star staff instead? (No sense)
  • Believes and tells the world on TV that Greg Mattison, an ace recruiter, says he's essentially too stupid and poor to get into Michigan without football? Knowing the NCAA forbids the school to counter. (No scruples)
  • Sincerely has a passion for playing somewhere else, respectfully declining the Wolverines? (No calling)
  • Has gone through life being called Messiah? (Cosmically big shoes to fill!)
When the dust settles after Signing Day, Michigan will be fine. Whether we win the battle for the likes of Mike Weber and Chris Clark, or we miss out, Harbaugh will make the most of every weapon he gets or inherits. Just having him here is the home run recruitment of the year. If it was a class of one and that one was Harbaugh, we're already winning.

So as you pretend to work all day, peeking at NSD feeds and alternating between ESC and F5 (depending on the location of your boss,) relax and take it all in. Be thankful for the commitments. Be understanding of the misses. Just don't doubt Jim Harbaugh. 

Serenity now. Insanity later. (The celebration kind. The glorious victory kind.) 

Go Blue!

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