Nov 29, 2020
Michigan Coach Jim Harbaugh Press Conference after Penn State Loss November 28
Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh spoke with the media after Michigan’s November 28 loss to Penn State. Read the transcript here.
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An observation that’s been made by quite a few people is that just the way that you conducted yourself on the sidelines and the way that your team conducted themselves on the field was significantly different in 2015 and ’16 than how it’s been the rest of the tenure that you’ve been here. Has there been a change in the way that you’ve approached the team or the way that the team’s approached games from the first two years of your tenure until the present day?
Jim Harbaugh: (00:23)
About the ball game, I think I’m coaching it hard, coaching it to the best of our ability. And I see that with our players, too. I see it means so much to so many. The effort is high. In critical situations, we weren’t able to get the stop or sustain the drive today.
Hey, Jim, we definitely saw a lot of off-coverage from particularly, it seems like, the safeties that Penn State took advantage of quite a bit. What were the issues that you were having as far as that particular brand of coverage, and what was the thought process of moving the guys off so much?
Jim Harbaugh: (01:13)
Well, I mean, we got hurt throughout the game on the slant route, the quarterback draw, and perimeter screens, didn’t tackle nearly good enough as well. But yeah, coming up with the call, coming up with the right call at the right time to get the stop and to also make the tackle to get our defense off the field, we came up short.
Speaker 3: (01:45)
Daniel Dash, please. Go ahead, Daniel.
Daniel Dash: (01:48)
Jim, when Cade reentered the game, how did his shoulder injury impact play calling?
Jim Harbaugh: (01:55)
Yeah, it was a gritty performance by him. I mean, that’s a tough kid. A lot of respect for Cade coming back, very gutty. But the shoulder did tighten up as the game went on.
Daniel Dash: (02:14)
How do you feel that that impacted the play calling down the stretch?
Jim Harbaugh: (02:19)
Well, we weren’t moving the ball on the ground, and, came up with a couple series there where we threw the ball and the guys were fighting, the guys were playing. I thought Hassan Haskins, another really football player-type of performance from him. And guys were battling. In the key situations, first half, weren’t able to extend the drives. Had some third and short opportunities, and then Penn State was able to convert their third and shorts. But I said, we’re not getting the stop at the critical time and not getting the first down to sustain the drive offensively. That was a big part of the game.
Yeah, Jim. You just touched on it now, but it seemed that you were frustrated on a number of short yardage plays in the second half. Was that a frustration with your team’s execution or with the spots that you were getting?
Jim Harbaugh: (03:23)
Yeah, just really that the spots was right at the end of the game. I thought a couple were short, but I don’t know. I mean, you’re down there in the field, you don’t really know for sure. But yeah, getting the tackles on the short yardage and just being able to get a yard when you need it offensively, yeah, that was, as I said, our inability to do that and their ability to do that was critical in the game.
When Joe came in the game on that last drive, was that related to Cade’s shoulder, or was there something specific you were looking for from Joe there?
Jim Harbaugh: (04:09)
Yeah. As I said, Cade, really gutty performance to come back, but the shoulder did start to tighten up. I could see it. And he was doing everything he could to stay in the game, but it just felt like that was tightening it up and it felt like going to Joe was the the best option for us. But I can tell you this. I mean, Cade was doing everything he possibly could to rally the team and to play on when his shoulder was tightening up on him. So that was the reason.