Jim Harbaugh is an absolute magnet for criticism, partly because he makes himself an easy target. But he took some heat on Monday for a ridiculous reason.
Harbaugh’s Michigan Wolverines were robbed of a touchdown in their Oct. 30 loss to Michigan State, which marks their only defeat so far this season. Harbaugh said after the game that he would be submitting the play to the Big Ten for a review.
On Monday, Harbaugh was asked a follow-up question regarding the matter. He answered by saying he heard back from the conference, which admitted the officials made an error.
Per Jim Harbaugh, the Big Ten told him that “they made a mistake” on the overturned fumble-touchdown at MSU. Said the Big Ten admitted mistakes were made on other plays in that game as well. Harbaugh: “The film doesn’t lie.”
— Zach Shaw (@_ZachShaw) November 8, 2021
Harbaugh answered the question. That was his mistake, because that was enough for him to be criticized.
Many on the Michigan State side thought Harbaugh was whining.
Just another day at the office for Jim Harbaugh. pic.twitter.com/QoKq2uxcCb
— Brad LaPlante (@bradlaplante) November 8, 2021
There are two ways to handle adversity in sports. One is to deflect blame like a toddler, the other is accept responsibility and move on to your next opponent. Jim Harbaugh is a coward and the perfect representation of that football program and university
— MSU Chief of Propaganda (@OdellBretthamJr) November 8, 2021
They even compared how Harbaugh handles officials to how Mel Tucker did.
How do you handle adversity…
A two part play pic.twitter.com/FoxlYDRHCy
— Jim Costa (@JimCosta_) November 8, 2021
Others couldn’t understand why Harbaugh was being targeted.
Jim Harbaugh and officiating talk is the definition of a lose-lose situation. He stopped commenting on officiating after the 2016 OSU game and was criticized for lack of passion. So he responds to a question about B1G response to questionable calls, and he's skewered for whining?
— Scott Bell (@sbell021) November 8, 2021
Last week MSU fans got all lippy when they heard the Big 10 apologized to Michigan for an officiating mistake that had an impact on the outcome of the game, saying it wasn’t true.
Now Harbaugh confirms it was true when asked about it, and they act like he shouldn’t have responded
— Michigan’s Armchair Quarterback (@ArmchairQB_UM) November 8, 2021
People are really mad at what Jim Harbaugh said today about officiating? He was asked a question about if he got feedback yet from the Big Ten and said that he did. He wasn't whining or standing on a soapbox, he was answering a question — which is part of his contract.
— Zach Shaw (@_ZachShaw) November 8, 2021
Look, Harbaugh’s team was robbed of a touchdown. The more vocal you are about that sort of thing, the less likely the referees are to call stuff against you, and the more likely they are to give you makeup calls.
Plus, if you see the play, you’ll understand right away why Harbaugh felt Michigan was robbed (video here).
Photo: Aug 31, 2019; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh before the game against the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
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