ESPN analyst says Jim Harbaugh not the 'elite college football coach' Michigan needs
After a fourth-straight bowl loss, the Jim Harbaugh critics are out and circling again. Another loss to a premier program, despite being a heavy underdog, has some saying it’s time for Michigan to move on from the head coach.
Michigan dropped a 35-16 contest to Alabama in the Citrus Bowl on Wednesday, and Harbaugh’s record in bowl games and against ranked opponents took another hit. In five years, the Wolverines have won one bowl games, still have yet to claim a division title and are still waiting on a victory over Ohio State.
ESPN college football analyst Emmanuel Acho says it’s time for Michigan to start looking for its next head coach. He explains why Harbaugh isn’t the best fit in Ann Arbor on ESPN’s First Take.
“I’m going to apologize if I have higher expectations for Michigan, Michigan prestige and the Michigan football program than the Michigan fans have for themselves,” Acho said on ESPN’s First Take. “When I think about college football, which I’ve covered for four years, when I think of the history of it, the prestige of it, I think of Michigan, USC, Alabama, Penn State, Oklahoma, Texas. Those are the programs that routinely I want to see excel above all programs. And for whatever reason, Michigan isn’t doing that under Jim Harbaugh.
“Jim Harbaugh is a very, very good coach. He’s a very good coach, but he’s not an elite college football coach. He’s not a Hall of Fame coach. What I mean by that — the Urban Meyers, the Nick Sabans, the Bob Stoops, the Joe Paternos, the Mack Browns. What I want from Michigan is elite and Jim Harbaugh is very good. For that reason, I think they should move on.”
Acho points out that Harbaugh has failed to win the big games since arriving at Michigan, and agrees that he’s a good head coach. After all, the Wolverines have reach nine wins or more in four of the five years he’s been there.
But that’s not good enough for Acho, who believes Michigan belongs with the bluebloods of college football. While Harbaugh has done an excellent job of elevating the Wolverines back to the top of the B1G, they still haven’t quite made that leap nationally.
It’s not likely that Michigan moves on from Harbaugh anytime soon, but as long as he continues to lose these big games, the grumblings will continue to surface.