Why Woody Hayes and Jim Harbaugh wore their rivals' gear back in the day
Jim Harbaugh stirred the pot. What else is new?
On Thursday, Harbaugh decided to remind the world about that time that legendary Ohio State coach Woody Hayes wore a Michigan hat.
He tweeted out the picture:
Unairbrushed evidence has been uncovered that confirms Woody's love & strong feelings for the University of Michigan. pic.twitter.com/BCQYVwAAVG
— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) March 9, 2017
It almost does look Photoshopped, but as it turned out, Hayes did indeed wear a Michigan hat one time back in 1984. He had a good reason, though.
An Eleven Warriors reader told the backstory of Hayes’ moment rocking a Michigan hat. Apparently he was at the Celebrity Waiters Luncheon when a Michigan fan approached him with a proposition. He said that he would donate $50 if Hayes put on a Michigan hat.
But according to a Columbus Dispatch story, Hayes responded by saying, “Naw. Wearing that hat is worth at least $100.” The Michigan fan obliged and Hayes wore the hat for a minute.
— Eleven Warriors (@11W) March 10, 2017
But naturally, Harbaugh got called out for his Hayes picture. The former Michigan quarterback had no shortage of Michigan State gear back in the day.
He wore it publicly, too (via @FromEastLansing):
— John (@FromEastLansing) March 9, 2017
So why did Harbaugh wear all of that Michigan State gear? If you recall, his brother-in-law is Indiana basketball coach Tom Crean. Before he got head coaching gigs at Marquette and IU, Crean was an assistant on Tom Izzo’s staff at MSU from 1995-99.
Harbaugh has never been shy about his support of Crean’s teams. He even offered up his support when the Hoosiers took on Michigan.
You can debate whether or not Harbaugh — the Michigan man of all Michigan men — should ever be caught in gear of a Michigan rival ever. It was Harbaugh who said that he got his new glasses in 2016 in an attempt to look like Hayes.
Just don’t expect Harbaugh to wear any more MSU gear. And there might not be a price tag you could put on Urban Meyer wearing a Michigan hat.