|Jay Harbaugh (right) with his dad, Jim|
Jay was a high school defensive lineman, but knee injuries shortened his career. He attended Oregon State and joined their undergraduate assistant coaching program under Mike Riley. He has been an offensive quality control assistant for the Baltimore Ravens for the past three seasons, obviously working for his uncle John, the Ravens' head coach. It's unclear at this point how much Jay had to do with the tight ends themselves, but the Ravens have had some decent players at the position in the form of Dallas Clark, Owen Daniels, Dennis Pitta, and Ed Dickson.
There's a pretty good article on Jay (LINK) that indicates the apple has not fallen far from the tree as far as work ethic goes. Father Jim is known for his competitiveness and work ethic, and the article mentions that Jay is much the same.
Michigan could have made a more impressive hire than getting a 25-year-old kid with no actual coaching job on his resume. At the same time, I'm not inclined to believe that a competitive guy like Jim Harbaugh is going to give his son a job that isn't deserved. It's not like the kid was sitting on his butt or working in a grocery store. He had a pretty solid job with an NFL team, albeit with another member of the family. But there are worse places to learn (such as Oakland) than Oregon State and with the Ravens, who won the Super Bowl a couple years ago. On top of his NFL experience, Michigan has hired a special teams coach, John Baxter, who has extensive experience as a tight ends coach. If there are struggles or questions, Baxter - and Jim Harbaugh himself - could give him some advice. With the very impressive group of coaches Jim has put together in Ann Arbor, I'll be interested to see how this "gamble" works out for the Wolverines. He has some good pieces to work with in Jake Butt, Khalid Hill, and Ian Bunting, along with some potential incoming players like Chris Clark and Tyrone Wheatley, Jr.
What exactly does a "quality control coach" do? Aside from controlling quality?ReplyDelete
Here is a quick read:Delete
This hire confuses me. All others look to be excellent.ReplyDelete
Would've liked to see Kevin Koger get this position.ReplyDelete
This is nepotism plain and simple; if Jay's last name was Smith, his resume wouldn't have gotten him within a country mile of this job. Still, it seems likely that he'll get plenty of support from the other coaches.ReplyDelete
Looks like Jim needs to hit the treadmill a bit more vigorously. — Don
I agree that he would probably not get the job if his name wasn't Harbaugh. At the same time, everyone who is anyone caught a lucky break at some point. Maybe Jay Harbaugh is a great coach in his own right who just happens to have been born to Jim Harbaugh. The truth is that Jack Harbaugh, Jim Harbaugh, and John Harbaugh have all proven to be good coaches, so it's not far-fetched to believe that Jay could follow suit.Delete
Something tells me Jay Harbaugh will be doing more admin duties and Baxter and the OL coach will be doing most of the coaching.ReplyDelete
Let's be honest here...I don't think the TE coach is that big of a position for the reasons stated above. Who is really coaching the TE's when on the line of scrimmage...the TE coach or the OL coach?
When the TE goes out on a route...who is the one coaching...the TE coach or the WR/OC coaches.
Its' the least important position coach on the roster. Family politics. It's a step up from the grad assistant coach.
He'll see how this one pans out, but it's obvious that Jay Harbaugh was a second choice at best -- the Kentucky TE guy was Harbaugh's first choice.ReplyDelete
That said, there could be a chance that Jay could be just like Jack, John, and Jim -- someone with a great work ethic and football smarts. He could really prove himself despite his relative youth. So this is completely an open book. I hope Jim made a right judgment, because we cannot afford to have one bad coach on our staff.
I'm skeptical. I won't rule him out or anything but if our talent-rich TEs struggle again it's going to look pretty bad for the Harbaughs. This is a LOOONG way from grabbing an ace recruiter like Vince Marrow.ReplyDelete
Everyone is giddy about Jim Harbaugh, justifiably so, but it's interesting to me that no one is criticizing this as an obvious example of nepotism.
It's obvious nepotism just not worthy of criticism. Do you honestly care that much?Delete
Yes, it is nepotism. That doesn't mean it's bad, though. And while I agree that it's a long way from grabbing an ace recruiter like Vince Marrow, Harbaugh also filled out the rest of his staff with some good recruiters, young guys, knowledgeable guys, successful guys, etc. I don't know that one single ace recruiter makes a huge difference if you have several good recruiters on the staff. One of the Rivals mods (from the Kentucky site, I believe) said that Marrow was a better recruiter than a coach, so maybe young Harbaugh is a better coach than a recruiter. Maybe he's solid at both. Frankly, I don't think we know enough about him at this point to judge one way or the other.Delete
He's from the Harbaughs, so I am feeling a bit better about the whole thing. We'll just have to see.Delete
Nepotism has negative connotations for good reasons. It seems, well, unamerican to do anything other than go by merit.Delete
Seems like people are willing to give Harbaugh a free pass and he can do whatever he wants. Very different from Rich Rodriguez era. Hope that's true for the results too.
Jack Harbaugh hired Jim Harbaugh to do some recruiting for him at Western Kentucky. Nepotism? Yes. Was it bad? I don't think so. Sure, Jim had the background in football to do the job well, but you and I don't know what Jay Harbaugh has to offer at this point.Delete
I don't think this is an indication that Harbaugh can do whatever he wants. He made a bunch of very good - or at least well respected - hires. This one and maybe Jedd Fisch are questionable decisions. The bottom line is that Jay is taking on a relatively small position, he comes from a family of very good coaches, and he's spent the last three years working in some capacity with a very good NFL team.
Rodriguez came in and changed a LOT of things. He broke some traditions. He changed the whole offense, and he changed the recruiting philosophy. The one thing I don't remember Rodriguez suffering through is much questioning of his coaching hires, at least not in the first year. The guys he brought with him were generally "his guys" except for Shafer, who had a good track record at that point. Only when the defense went down the tubes and Greg Robinson was hired did people really start to lay into Rodriguez for his hires.
Also, even if Harbaugh is given a little more slack, so what? The guy won at Michigan, was a solid NFL quarterback, and won at San Diego, Stanford, and San Francisco. Rich Rodriguez did a good job at Glenville State and West Virginia, but comparing the two at the time of their hiring, I would say Harbaugh has a better resume, since he had three really good years as an NFL head coach.